Novena will precede Santo Niño de Cebu enthronement celebration July 16
The 24th anniversary of the enthronement of the icon of Santo Niño de Cebu at St. Joseph Church in Peoria will be celebrated with a Mass and reception on Saturday, July 16. Bishop Louis Tylka will preside at the 5:30 p.m. liturgy at St. Joseph, 103 S. Richard Pryor Place, and bless all Santo Niño statues as part of the festivities.
The potluck reception will be held at the Spalding Pastoral Center, 419 N.E. Madison Ave., after Mass. All are welcome.
To prepare for the celebration, a novena will be prayed from Thursday, July 7, through Friday, July 15, at St. Mark Church, 1113 W. Bradley Ave., in Peoria. The prayers will begin at 6 p.m. each day.
The original icon known as Santo Niño de Cebu — the Holy Child of Cebu — was given to Queen Juana by Ferdinand Magellan after her baptism. He was exploring the Philippines and used the island of Cebu as his base.
Hidden away for safekeeping, the statue was discovered during an expedition led by Miguel Lopez de Legazpi in 1564. It is considered the oldest relic in the Philippines and is now enthroned in the Minor Basilica of Santo Niño de Cebu in Cebu City, Philippines.
Many Filipinos keep statues of Santo Niño in their homes. It is tradition for the statue to face the door to greet visitors.
For more information about the Mass or reception in Peoria, call Lucy Bender at (309) 258-6501 or Nympha White at (815) 483-3013.