Thursday, September 20, 2018
On the 8th of September 2018, The Catholic Church celebrated the birthday of Jesus's first disciple, his mother, Mama Mary. The annual procession was participated by nearly 5,000 Marian devotees who came to join the prayer march which started at 3:00 o'clock in the morning at the Fuente Osmeña Circle at Osmeña Boulevard en route to the Cebu Metropolitan Cathedral where an early 6:00 a.m. mass was held. 27 carriages featuring the different titles and images of the Blessed Virgin were paraded during the procession carried by carozas beautifully adorned with flowers of different colors to fit the festivities of the Queen. Holding their candles that lit the darkness of the early hours of the morning, the devotees fervently prayed all the mysteries if the Holy Rosary with petitions for each Hail Mary uttered as they walked. At the Holy Eucharist presided by Archbishop Jose Palma, all pilgrims were encouraged to follow Mary's footsteps as they follow Jesus.
The annual "Walk with Mary" event is organized by the Association of the Children of Mary Immaculate – Vincentian Marian Youth (CoM-VMY) together with the Archdiocesan Council of Cebu for all Marian devotees in hopes of spreading Marian devotion to people as well as the propagation of the Miraculous Medal which is strongly believed to perform miracles to people who wear them and who fervently pray the prayer on it. The celebration of the Walk with Mary was first celebrated in 1985 and it is held every first Sunday of September.
During the Walk with Mary, a mass was held in honor of the Blessed Mother. The members of the Children of Mary who were present during the overnight event had an activity where they shared their wishes for the organization.
The Walk with Mary is indeed very significant. It is not only so to the devotees, but to the Vincentian community as well. Here is how some of the students found the Walk with Mary significant in their being Vincentian.
"The Walk with Mary may be a recurring event every year for the people who would like to take part in celebration of the birth of our Blessed Mother, but every year we take this journey, this walk, and become one unit, one family of people from different places. Amidst the busy schedules and how early it was, devoted people gave their utmost attention for Mother Mary. As a Vincentian, the walk has become an event I look up to because it is like we are journeying with Her, feeling Her presence and giving reverence to Her holy name. We communicate with Her in a deeper level and most of all, we express our love and gratitude to what She has done for us, that is why the walk is one thing that may be an annual event, but has become an event in which we explore and discover ourselves with Mary as our Mother."
"The walk gave me strength to overcome my inner problems and to make us realize that we are just pilgrims here in earth walking through life."
"I guess for me it's an action of devotion, especially since we walked a long distance while praying. In our time now, everything is instant and we have such advance technology, but we humble down ourselves and walk while praying. We sacrifice our time to do this which is something that a lot of people have a hard time doing right now."
"The Walk with Mary is significant for me as a Vincentian because it is a way of showing my love and devotion to the Blessed Mother and it is also a way of saying thanks to her for all the blessings she has given me."