Bicolanos in Austria celebrate the feast of our Lady Peñafrancia

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Steadfast in their devotion to the Bicolandia patroness the Our Lady of Peñafrancia, Bicolanos in Austria celebrated the Feast of our Lady of Penafrancia on September 18, 2021.

Nevertheless, the grand celebration of the almost two decade devotion to the Our Lady of Peñafrancia in Austria had been canceled  to prevent a possible surge of coronavirus disease (COVID-19) cases.

Leading the celebration are the Bikol Society in Austria and the Filipino Catholic Chaplaincy in Vienna. A concelebrated mass was held on September 18 at the Filipino Catholic Chaplaincy Church in Vienna’s 10th District, led  by  Fr. Ely Dalanon,  the spiritual adviser of the Bikol Society and Chaplain.

Message of Philippine Vice President Leni Robredo

„The very essence of this Marian event is our faith, devotion and love of God through Mary, our ‘INA,’ the patroness of Bicolandia,” shared one of the devotees of Ina.

It has been already a tradition among the Bikolanos here to  commence the celebration of the Feast of Ina with a fluvial procession on the Danube River. Because of the COVID pandemic, the fluvial celebration had been cancelled.

The first fluvial procession in Vienna happened in 2003. Since then, the Penafrancia fluvial parade has become a tradition among the Bikolanos and Marian devotees in Austria.

Before the fluvial procession, a 9-day novena was conducted at the Filipino Catholic Church in Vienna’s 10th District, where devotees gather for the nightly prayers and take away foods sponsored by independent Bicol support organizations. The Novena masses were likewise broadcasted live via Facebook.

The Penafrancia Committee of the Bicol Society in Austria, under the leadership of Marizel Rojas, has been working with the Filipino Catholic community for a successful and meaningful Peñafrancia feast.

Maraming salamat sa lahat ng Our Lady of Peñafrancia devotees na sumali at tumulong para magkaroon tayo ng maganda, maayos at makabuluhang ka piyestahan ni Ina ngayong taon, 10-19 September 2021, kahit may CoViD-19 pandemic. Most of all sa ating officers ng Bikol Society Austria (BSA), Hermanas/Hermano Mayor, Florist, Donor ng damit/Cross “Team Ina”, Chaplain, Assistant Chaplains, other Priests, Agape Sponsors, Choirs, FCC & PGG, photographers/vloggers/bloggets, at lahat ng sumuporta at tumulong. DIOS MABALOS!!!! To God be the Glory! Viva la Virgen!!!!“, Marizel Rojas said (via facebook wall).

The Peñafrancia Festival, the biggest religious event in the Bicol region, has drawn millions of tourists, pilgrims and devotees to its different festivities, such as the traslacion and fluvial procession, which involves the transfer of the image of the Bicol patroness, referred to as “Ina” (mother) by devotees, from its official home at the Peñafrancia Basilica Minore to the Naga Metropolitan Cathedral and vice versa.

The OLPDA- Our Lady of Peñafrancia Devotees in Austria also celebrated the Feast of Penafrancia with the celebration of the Holy Mass at the St. Francis of Asissi Church Vienna, Mexicoplatz.

Our Lady of Peñafrancia Devotees in Austria/Picture: Mandy Salonga
  • hector pascua/Pictures: Mandy Salonga
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