"There will be no mass in this picnic," so declared Ellen Tan, 2015 Philippine Independence Week Committee (PIWC). Tan referred to the bold motion acted upon by the PIWC members present at their meeting March 23 to eliminate the Catholic mass celebrated in the independence day picnic, scheduled this year on Sunday, June 7 at the Proesel Park in Lincolnwood,Il.
"I strongly recommend that picnickers should attend early morning mass or worship services before they go to our event," Tan added. The Chicago Catholic archdiocese has ruled that the celebration of the Eucharist outside churches is not allowed anymore.
PIWC officer Jo Wee Sit, an advocate of excluding the mass from the picnic program, welcomes the change. "Now we are not in violation of church rules, we don't have to spend money for this particular activity and we don't deprive parishes of the offerings we get from the worshipers in the masses held during our picnics," said Wee Sit.
2008 PIWC chair Lydia Tayco (nee Rhoton) of Great Commission Christian Church had also expressed concerns in the past about holding a mass without considering other services for those who are non-Catholics. "PIWC is a civic--not a faith-based organization, now we are fair…we got it right," added a PIWC officer.
Picnic chairperson, Evelyn Tolledo, meanwhile, successfully got the approval of the group to change the venue from the Bunker Hill picnic grove to Proesel Park, along Lincoln, Morse and Kostner Avenues., just South of Touhy Ave. in Lincolnwood, Illinois. Tolledo reported that the new place, unlike Bunker, has a shed, electricity and it doesn't require a costly hazard insurance.
Tolledo added that she solicited pledges of more than 20 trays of food, dessert and drinks from various donors. Aside from fun and games, Tolledo said that there will a health fair for all ages.
The traditional "Seven Last Words" service will be held on Good Friday, at 1 pm, April 3 at the Philippine American Ecumenical Church (PAEC), 3533 N. Albany Ave., Chicago.
Speakers are led by the host pastor, Bishop Eleazar Pascua (First Word), Rev. Abel Amago (Second word), Rev. Leo Constantino (Third Word), Rev. Roger Pangilinan (Fourth Word), Rev. Samuel Manansala (Fifth Word), Pastor Carol Shauf (Sixth Word) and Rev. Marz Rivera (Seventh Word).
For program and church location details, call Bishop Pascua at 773-583-4448.
Ms. Linda Franco, the Choir Director of PAEC, will conduct the choral music with Mrs. Marilyn Bacerra who will render an offertory song. PAEC parishioners will serve refreshments after the service.
Meanwhile, Rev. Digna Campanano will be the guest preacher during the traditional Sunrise Service on Easter Sunday, at 6 a.m. April 5, to be held at Edison Park United Methodist Church, 6740 N. Oliphant, Chicago. For details call Rev. Victor Melad, the host pastor at 773-792-3030 or email: email@example.com. Breakfast will be served after the service.
The annual Holy Week joint services are sponsored by the Philippine American College of Clergy (PACC). Its president, Rev. Cerna Rand, said that offerings from the two events will be used as scholarship funds for seminary students.
The Dagupenos of the Midwest will hold their induction ceremony of new officers at the Lone Tree Manor Banquet, 7730 N. Milwaukee Ave., Niles, IL on Friday, April 24 from 6:30 pm to 12 midnight.
The attire is semi-formal. Donation asked is $35. To RSVP, call Julie Chavez at 773-543-0094 or Ed Cabanayan at 773-315-0308.
Couples for Christ (CfC, North Chapter) is giving a despedida party to Philippine Tourism Director Vernie V. Morales, her husband Robert and two daughters Monica and Micah on Saturday, April 11, 6 p.m. at the Little Quiapo Reataurant banquet hall. Bob and Vernie are CfC members since the year after Vernie was appointed tourism director in Chicago in 1999.
Interested persons, please call Lynn Santos, 847-677-3898.