Relic from St. John Paul II’s blood to be open for public veneration Friday

MANILA — Devotees of Saint Pope John Paul II are invited to venerate his first class relic at the Our Lady of Veritas Chapel in Quezon City starting Friday.

In a statement, Church-run Radio Veritas said the public can pray before the saint’s relic “Ex Sanguine” – from the blood at the Veritas Chapel beginning March 31 until April 7 from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.

The event is in commemoration of the death of Saint Pope John Paul II on April 2.

Pope John Paul II was born on May 18, 1920, in Wadowice, Poland. He was ordained in 1946, became the bishop of Ombi in 1958, and became the archbishop of Krakow in 1964.

He was made a cardinal by Pope Paul VI in 1967, and in 1978 became the first non-Italian pope in more than 400 years. He was a vocal advocate for human rights and used his influence to effect political change. He was Pope for 27 years from 1978 to 2005 making him the second longest-serving pope in modern history after Pope Pius IX.

Pope John Paul II is also the most widely traveled pope in history, visiting 129 countries during his pontificate. He visited the Philippines twice—in February 1981, when he beatified the first Filipino martyr, Lorenzo Ruiz, and in January 1995, when an estimated of 4 million Filipinos attended the Mass he celebrated at the close of World Youth Day which was considered to be the largest single gathering in Christian history.

He died at the age of 84 at the Vatican on April 2, 2005, the vigil of Divine Mercy Sunday. He was beatified on May 1, 2011 (Divine Mercy Sunday) in Saint Peter’s Square by Pope Benedict XVI, his immediate successor and was canonized on April 27, 2014 (again Divine Mercy Sunday), together with Pope John XXIII.

His feast day is celebrated on the anniversary of his papal inauguration on October 22. He is the patron Saint of World Youth Day and the World Meeting of Families.

Meanwhile, the public especially the devotees of St. Pedro Calungsod, the second Filipino saint are invited to also visit his image at the same the chapel until his feast day on April 2, 2017.

He is the patron of Filipino youth, altar boys, Overseas Filipino Workers, and Cebuanos.