RAY de Pangasinan: Hosanna to the King of Kings
by Bonnie de Guzman
RAY de Pangasinan selling ‘palaspas’ online for two consecutive years
Urbiztondo, PANGASINA–RAY de Pangasinan has witnessed how the pandemic challenged everyone. It could be noted that last March 2020, the country has declared community quarantine and it so happened that the Holy Week was approaching. Despite the threat, RAY de Pangasinan still sold ‘palaspas’ amid the enhanced community quarantine for the Palm Sunday, the commemoration of the triumphant entrance of Jesus Christ to Jerusalem where people usually decorate blessed “palaspas” or palm fronds to the altars of churches and houses. It is also the beginning of the Holy Week. As mass gatherings were prohibited as of that moment, the group decided to sell ‘palaspas’ online and indeed, it was successful following the Inter Agency Taskforce (IATF) protocols while selling.
For the second year of celebrating Holy Week amid pandemic, RAY de Pangasinan once again continued the selling of ‘palaspas’ online which started March 22, 2021. This time, the coverage became wider as the RAY de Pangasinan members from the various chapel areas have also decided to sell ‘palaspas’ online. These chapel areas are: RAY de Pangasinan – Our Lady of the Visitation Parish – Pasibi East, RAY de Pangasinan – St. Joseph the Worker Chapel – Mapolopolo, RAY de Pangasinan – Our Lady of Fatima Chapel – Pasibe West, RAY de Pangasinan – Our Lady of Manaoag Chapel – Malaca and RAY de Pangasinan – Our Lady of Consolation Chapel – Maigpa. They comprise three municipalities of Pangasinan namely: Urbiztondo, Bayambang and Basista. With a uniform price, the ordinary ‘palapas’ was sold for Php25.00 per seven pieces. The group provided free delivery in every chapel area and the health protocols were properly observed.
As a result, the organization was able to raise a combined amount of Php 7, 215.00 which makes more than 1,000 pieces of weaved ‘palaspas’. Thanks to the community who donated the harvested young coconut leaves to weave palaspas—a fortnight before Palm Sunday. The proceeds of the palaspas will fund the group’s future activities and programs for youth amid the Covid-19 pandemic scare.
For many, the pandemic may have brought negative impact to various aspects of human living which in turn, became suffering: loss of jobs, death of a loved one, scarcity of resources, depression, loss of faith and many more. But let us always be reminded of what St. Faustina said, “Suffering is a great grace; through suffering, the soul becomes like the Savior; in suffering, love becomes crystallized; the greater the suffering, the purer the love.” Our God is bigger than our fear! Yes, we must adhere to the what the government tells us but more than that, whatever challenge we encounter, we must and should keep our faith and pray. May this online selling of ‘palaspas’ be an inspiration to everyone that pandemic cannot stop us from loving and serving our God.