Friday, January 24, 2014

MAS Seminarians and the Filipino Community in Oregon Celebrate Annual Sto. Nino Feast Day

Story and photos by Brother Lorenzo Conocido, OSB

Editor's Note: More photos of the Santo Nino celebration may be found in our previous post.

The Filipino seminarian community together with the various Filipino groups in Oregon celebrated the annual Sto. Nino Feast at Mount Angel Abbey and Seminary on January 18th. About 400 people attended the event.

The event started with a special Mass in honor of the Sto. Nino de Cebu with Fr. Rodel de Mesa, a seminary alumus, as the main celebrant.  Priests from the seminary and some Filipino guest priests were also there to concelebrate.  The liturgical music was provided by the Filipino community choir from Portland, led by Mr. Ken Canedo of Oregon Catholic Press, who was also the organist.

A procession was held after the Mass.  During the procession, Filipinos were carrying images of the Sto. Nino and danced in forward-backward steps, a traditional festival movement, while exclaiming joyfully "Viva, Pit Senyor Santo Nino!" (Hail! We invoke thee, Santo Nino!)  The procession started in front of the Abbey Church and concluded at the Damian Center where a reception was held.

The reception program started with a prayer and the blessing of Sto. Nino statues and images which were displayed on the stage.  The seminarians and members of various Filipino groups provided traditional Filipino food, dance, and music. The program was a diverse cultural presentation with each group singing or dancing something from their cultural background.

The Samoan seminarians

The Vietnamese seminarians

At Mount Angel Seminary, this year's Filipino seminarian community president is Frankie Villanueva.

The devotion to the Sto. Nino de Cebu is the oldest and most popular in the Philippines, and the Holy See has granted the Philippines to celebrate this feast on the Sunday following the Baptism of the Lord.

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