Pope Francis | Roxas Blvd. | 18 Jan 2015 | Canon 50D | ©2015
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"He (Jesus) assumed all our pain.
I have come to tell you that Jesus is Lord.
He never lets us down."
(Pope Francis, Tacloban)
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The moment he passed in front of us, just three seconds of it, was magical. We couldn't explain it. We all had little tears in our eyes when we saw him. It was then followed by lots of smiling and hugging. Lucy Torres was right -- the joy was palpable. You could almost touch it. Everyone was so kind and patient, too. People were quick to help each other.
Everywhere he went, the Pope left inspiring words for us to ponder upon. He talked about rejecting corruption, about simplicity, about being one with the poor, about protecting the family, about respecting life, about forgiveness, about answering the call to become witnesses. He reminded us that we have a Lord who walks with us in the most difficult moments of our lives.
But what really touched me was his great humility. I will always remember that moment in Tacloban where he acknowledged he didn't know what to say of their unimaginable pain. I will always remember that moment in UST when 12-year-old Glyzelle Palomar broke down when she asked a heartbreaking question on why God allows horrible things to happen to children. While addressing the crowd, he said: "She is the only one who has put a question for which there is no answer." I couldn't help but shed tears the moment I saw Glyzelle wrapped her arms around the Pope in an embrace. It felt like she hugged him because she finally found someone who understood.
I can relate a lot to the emotions of that moment. I was a battered child who felt alone and unloved. I had similar questions when I was a young girl. And it's true, there are no answers.
On the day he left, the Pope walked to the plane from the pope mobile carrying his own bag. Perhaps, the only head of state to do so. In a world where a lot of people have sense of entitlement and have become divas, it was quite refreshing to see a head of state and leader of one of the biggest religions in the world to be this grounded.
Our country has experienced a lot of heartache the past year and his visit has brought us a lot of healing and hope and inspiration.