Relic of St. John Paul II up for veneration anew

MANILA — The faithful will be able to venerate the blood relic of Saint Pope John Paul II for three days next week, his birthday month at the Manila Cathedral in Intramuros, Manila.

Manila Cathedral Rector Fr. Regie Malicdem said the relic of the former Pontiff will be open for veneration from May 18, his birthday until May 20, from 6 a.m. to 8 p.m.

“We are opening again Saint John Paul II’s blood relic for veneration because of the many requests from those who failed to come during the first public exposition,” he said in a statement issued on Wednesday.

“We also promised that there will be a frequent public exposition of the blood relic at the Manila Cathedral so that many people may be able to venerate. Plans are also already being made for the relic’s visit to parishes in the Archdiocese of Manila, starting next year to celebrate the Year of the Youth,” the Catholic priest added.

The schedule of the second public exposition and veneration of the blood relic of St. Pope John Paul II at the Manila Cathedral is as follows: May 18, Friday, 6 a.m. to 8 p.m.; May 19, Saturday, Mass for Family and Life at 8 a.m. then veneration from 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. and May 20, Pentecost Sunday, 6 a.m. to 8 p.m.

Malicdem said that the Eucharistic Celebration on May 19 will be celebrated by Fr. Joel Jason of the Archdiocesan Ministry for Family and Life.

“Let us once again come together and receive God’s grace through the intercession of our beloved St. John Paul II! Please share to your loved ones and friends!” he said.

Last month, thousands of faithful and devotees of St. John Paul II venerated the latter’s first-class relic, during the two-day veneration also at the Manila Cathedral on April 7 and 8.

John Paul II was born in Wadowice, Poland, in 1920 and died in 2005 in Vatican City. He was 84.

He was the head of the Roman Catholic Church for 27 years, the second longest serving pontiff after Pope Piux IX who served the Vatican for 31 years. He was canonized as a saint on Apr. 27, 2014.

Saint John Paul II visited the country twice when he was still a pope, in February 1981 and during the World Youth Day celebration in January 1995.