Mark 10, 13-16 Devotions in the Catholic Faith
The Sto. Niño has different looks: the best in sportswear (with a baseball cap and jerseys), the best in gown (with a long gold gown and a scepter), the best in national costume (with camisa de chino and red pants), and the best in skin-wear (the nude Sto. Niño sold in
So I guess today is one appropriate time to talk about devotions. There are varied reactions to devotions to the Sto. Niño and to others as well.. Many have uncomfortable reactions to devotions. Though expressions of popular piety have long been part of being Catholic, many people especially the educated see these devotions as inconsistent with a mature faith, overly reliant on things --- beads, medals, scapulars --- and even superstitious. For some, devotions are to be avoided, and not embraced. Why would you wipe the whole statue of a saint with a handkerchief when the statue is dusty? Why are there people who actually treat a statue like a person; thus the Sto. Niño is treated like a child? We put candies on the altar; and there are stories of people seeing the Sto. Niño play with children.
On the other hand, devotions did not lose their appeal to older Catholics who remember their youth with affection. For example, the older UPSCANs who have stayed in this church since it was built, fondly remember reciting the Rosary with family and fellow students, attending novenas and singing special songs. Or who would forget wearing the Miraculous Medal on October or receiving a scapular from someone? Present surveys are saying that there is now a renewed rise in devotions from the young who are seeking something “tactile, colorful, exotic,” and “a sense of mystery in their lives.” Thus, in the pockets of the young are rosary beads, a cross, and a small picture of a saint in their wallets. When I was a teacher, we told our students in Ateneo schools to have a rosary in their pocket. Our Catholic faith marks Ateneans.
Vatican II says that though devotions played a very important role in the spread of the faith, devotions should be seen as flowing from and leading back to liturgy, the central form of worship in the Church. Vatican II “warmly commends” the practice of devotions, but it warns against devotions taking the place of the mass. We hear this remark, “nagrosary naman ako, di ko na kailangang mag-simba.” Or we see people not participating at mass because they are too busy flipping their novenas or praying the rosary. The Church tells us that devotions are subordinate to the
Therefore, the feast of the Sto. Nino is an anniversary and a commemoration of an event. We celebrate the coming of our faith in the
So ask this questions: Does your devotion to the Sto. Niño and to any particular saint help you mature in wisdom, age and favor in the eyes of God and fellow persons? Does it help you know Jesus more closely? Does it make you holier? Does it make you a better person? Does it enrich and increase your appreciation of the liturgy? Has the Christian faith in the