Cardinal Jose Advincula developed his first Palm Sunday homily as Manila archbishop to urge people to speak out for truth and justice.
Reflecting on the day’s Gospel readings, he lamented that many people nowadays no longer let their faith be heard like the way people shouted with joy as Jesus made his way to Jerusalem.
He cited, for instance, many people’s preference for money, power and fame over their faith, truth and justice.
“When it comes to money, wealth, position, power, and popularity, it seems that the noise is way louder,” Advincula said at the Manila Cathedral.
“But when it comes to God, faith, truth, and justice, why is it that there are only whispers or even silence,” he said.
According to him, “it is sad to admit that it seems that the shout of people against Jesus is louder than those who accept him”.
Hundreds of Catholics attended the Mass, which marks the start of Holy Week and leads to Easter.
The celebration coincided with the “Alay Kapwa Sunday” when special collections are done for the Church’s charitable programs for the poor.
Before the Mass, the cardinal led the blessing and unveiling of the “Homeless Jesus” statue installed at the patio of the cathedral.
The sculpture by Canadian artist Timothy Schmalz illustrates Jesus as a person in need, alternately sick, hungry, naked, a stranger or without a shelter.
Aside from taking pictures, the cardinal then encouraged the faithful to reflect on the message of the art work.
“Listen to what it is saying and respond to its message by showing love and concern for the poor and the homeless,” Advincula said.