CEBU CITY, Philippines – Only 700 people will be allowed to participate in the First Baptism reenactment on April 14, in line with the quincentenary celebrations of the arrival of Christianity in the country.
Fr. Mhar Vincent Balili, secretary-general for the 500 Years of Christianity (500 YOC) of the Archdiocese of Cebu, announced on Tuesday, March 23, that the Cebu City Government and the Inter-Agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Infectious Disease (IATF) allowed the event to proceed but subject to stringent health protocols.
These included closing all roads within a 300-meter radius in Plaza Sugbo, and capping the maximum number of guests to 700 only, said Balili.
The announcement was made during Tuesday’s Chrism Mass and Renewal of Priestly Vows at the Cebu Metropolitan Cathedral, which was led by Cebu Archbishop Jose Palma.
In his Homily, Palma expressed happiness that the Archdiocese will be celebrating the quincentennial anniversary of Christianity’s arrival in the Philippines, despite challenges brought about by the pandemic.
The reenactment of the First Baptism will be held at 2 PM on April 14 beside Magellan’s Cross in Plaza Sugbo.
Apostolic Nuncio to the Philippines Archbishop Charles Brown will also preside over the Pontifical Mass after the reenactment, which will be followed by cultural celebrations at the Pilgrim Center of the Basilica Minore del Sto. Niño de Cebu.