OPPOSING politicians were seated together in the first row during the yearly Misa Traslacion as one of the celebrating priests urged everybody to spread their devotion to the Child Jesus to others.
A transport convoy, from Basilica del Sto Niño, arrived in the National Shrine of St. Joseph before 10 a.m. yesterday carrying three images: the sorrowful Jesus, Our Lady of Guadalupe and the Señor Sto. Niño.
Chief Insp. Abraham Ocampo of the Mandaue City Police Office estimated a crowd of more than 5,000 softly squeezed inside the church as the slight drizzle outside cleared the patio leaving a few umbrella-carrying devotees.
A concelebrated mass followed with Msgr. Adelito Abella, the main celebrant, joined by 10 other priests.
One of the 10 priests, a doctor of church history, is Fr. Marvin Mejia who gave the sermon.
Traslacion, according to him is the time when Our Lady of Guadalupe and Sto. Niño visit Mandaue City; similar to the Gospel read during the mass, when Mary visited her cousin Elizabeth.
Mejia said that visit has a deeper meaning.
“Mahisama unta kita ni Santa Maria nga niduaw sa iyang ig-agaw, nga magdala kita sa pagtoo sa batang Jesus ngadto sa uban,” he told the devotees.
Before the concelebrated mass, politicians were told to take their seats in front.
They were Gov. Gwendolyn Garcia, Mayor Jonas Cortes and his wife Sarah and Provincial Board (PB) Member Wenceslao Gakit.
Rep. Nerissa Soon-Ruiz (Cebu Province, 6th district), former PB member Luigi Quisumbing; and vice gubernatorial candidate Glen Soco took a seat also in the front row.
City councilors followed them in the next row.
When they were all seated, the Sto. Niño image was ushered in. When all three images were in place, politicians were allowed to show their personal veneration to the images before the concelebrated mass.
Vice Mayor Carlo Fortuna, who also attended the mass, was earlier seen aboard a motorcycle meeting the images as these entered Mandaue City. (OCP/Sun.Star Cebu)