The Nativity, conceded the greatest story of mankind, will be remembered on Tuesday as the birth of our Savior more than 2,000 years ago got re-enacted in all churches throughout Christendom to cap the nine-day dawn masses tonight.
In the Diocese of Tagbilaran, Bishop Abet Uy will officiate the Holy Mass at the St. Joseph Cathedral which will be heard live over dyRD-AM, Worldwide. In the Diocese of Talibon, Bishop Patrick Daniel Parcon will lead the clergy during the midnight mass at the Talibon Cathedral.
After tonight’s Holy Mass, a fireworks display at the St. Joseph Cathedral grounds will add color to the celebration courtesy of the Bohol Chronicle Radio Corp. (BCRC).
The original setting of the commemoration was a lowly manger in Bethlehem where Jesus, the son of Mary, was born after a haughty innkeeper refused them any room.
His parents found a stable to spend the night. St. Luke, one of the Chroniclers of the Christian Church reported: Shortly after Mary’s return from her cousin’s home, the simple marriage ceremony conducted according to Jewish rites was completed, and Joseph led his bride to his own home.
The Roman Emperor, Augustus, issued an edict that all his subject peoples register in their city of origin. The family of Joseph originated in Bethlehem, so he was obliged to make the journey from Nazareth. Though knowing her time was near at hand, Mary, with utter trust in God, set out with him on the arduous journey.
Bethlehem was understandably overcrowded, since many visitors have arrived for the registration. Consequently, the only shelter Joseph could find for his wife was a little stable, probably owned by the people who conducted the inn, where they had sought admission in vain. There, in that lowly manger, Mary brought forth the King of kings. A cold drafty stable became the center of the universe.
God had arranged that His son be paid homage, just after His birth, by those very dear to Christ’s heart. We shall see that throughout His life, the poor and the humble were especially favored.
As Mary and Joseph, wrapped in loving devotion, bent over the Child, Angel Gabriel announced the great news to a group of shepherds nearby. These tidings were not revealed to the great ones of Israel, the priests, the scholars, the Pharisees.
The poor, humble, sincere shepherds were the favored ones. A chorus of angels thrilled them with these timeless words: “Glory to God in the highest; and on earth, peace to men of goodwill.” Full of faith, the shepherds hastened to the stable and adored the child, then they fled their humble homes to tell their families of the wonders they had witnessed.
The midnight mass which commemorates the Nativity in all churches throughout Christendom, will be the liveliest one in the liturgy.
Church bells will ring at the strike of midnight to herald the joyful event of Christ’s birth in Bethlehem.
Meanwhile,The Noche Buena is a time-honored tradition among Filipinos. It is also a time for gift-giving, a time for revelry and a time for loving.
After the midnight mass, family gathers for a reunion in the homes, highlighted by family picture taking. With the social media, facebooks all over will get filled with family pictures.
And on Christmas Day, tradition calls godchildren to troop to the house of their ninongs (maninoys) and ninangs (maninays) to pay their respects. In return the godchildren received some Christmas treats.