Cardinal Jose Advincula, the incoming archbishop of the Archdiocese of Manila, arrived in the Philippine capital on Tuesday, June 22, two days ahead of his installation on Thursday.
The archdiocese is all set for the installation and for the celebration to welcome its new prelate.
“The celebrations will be very simple. We will follow the liturgical guidelines. No fanfare,” said Father Reginald Malicdem, the archdiocese’s chancellor in an online media briefing earlier.
“We will just be balancing between the celebration and being conscious of the situation because of the pandemic,” said the priest.
The cardinal was welcomed at the “Residencia del Arzobispo” in the old walled city of Intramuros by Bishop Broderick Pabillo, apostolic administrator, with the Board of Consultors of the archdiocese.
The Manila Cathedral posted pictures on Facebool of Cardinal Advincula’s arrival and the vestments that the archbishop will use during his installation.
“The vestments to be used by Cardinal Jose Advincula is exquisitely handcrafted by the Talleres de Nazaret, an Apostolic Center of the Siervas de San Jose,” read the post.
A picture of the “cathedra” or the Archbishop’s chair that carries the coat of arms of Cardinal Advincula was also posted on social media.
The cathedra, or the Archbishop’s ‘chair,’ is a sign of his teaching office and pastoral authority in the local church.
The present cathedra, installed during the postwar reconstruction in 1958, is made of the choicest Italian marbles and was designed and crafted in Rome by the Istituto Internazionale d’Arte Liturgica.
Due to the prevailing pandemic, attendance in the celebration inside the Manila cathedral, which has a capacity of 2,500 people, will be limited to only 400 people.
“We beg the understanding of everyone so that we can ensure everyone’s safety and we can observe the health protocols,” said Father Malicdem, who is also rector of the cathedral.
The archdiocese has earlier set a series of events at the cathedral to “declog” the celebrations.
Cardinal Advincula will lead a Mass with lay leaders on June 25 and with consecrated men and women in the archdiocese on June 26.
The new archbishop will also visit an urban poor community in the city of Pasay’s Maricaban district, and celebrate Mass at the Mary, Comforter of the Afflicted, church on June 27.
It has been a tradition in the archdiocese that after a new archbishop’s installation, he visits one area with “special concerns.”
Cardinal Advincula’s predecessors, Cardinals Gaudencio Rosales and Luis Antonio Tagle, visited the city’s former dump, the so-called Smokey Mountain.
Father Malicdem said authorities will temporarily close the old walled city of Intramuros to control the number of people who will come to the area on June 24.
“The whole Intramuros will be closed on that day. Only the guests will be allowed to enter Intramuros and those who are part of the celebration,” said the priest.
“We will just open Intramuros to traffic after about three hours, or around 9:00 a.m., of June 24,” he added.
The archdiocese encouraged the faithful to follow the installation rites of Cardinal Advincula online.
“We wish to ask everyone to just join the celebration through live streaming,” said Father Malicdem.