Pope Francis celebrated Mass with the Filipino community, one of the biggest in Rome. St. Peter's Basilica was completely full.
For the Filipino community, the celebration was especially significant, as it was the Simbang-Gabi (Mass of the night). It is a devotion to prepare for Christmas during the nine days leading up to it.
The pope recognized the community's efforts in their work. He told them that, having left their homeland, they have a mission to look for a better future.
“May your faith be leaven in the parish communities you belong to today. I encourage you to multiply the opportunities for encounter to share your cultural and spiritual richness, while at the same time letting yourselves be enriched by the experiences of others.”
He invited them to prepare to celebrate Christmas by being leaven for a society that often fails to experience God's beauty and the grace of his presence.”
Before concluding, these two Filipino girls placed an offering at the image of the Virgin, while everyone sang, “Mary, Queen of the Philippines.”
Daniel Díaz Vizzi
Translation: Claudia Torres