His Grace, Most Rev, (Dr.) Alfred Adewale Martins has formally declared March 19, 2021 as the takeoff date for the celebration of the Year of St. Joseph. He called on the Parish Priests and Priests-in-charge to lead the faithful of their parishes in a worthy celebration of the year. He said: |”We are all aware of the declaration of the Year of St. Joseph by Pope Francis. The formal take-off of the year would be on the feast of St. Joseph, husband of Mary, that is, March 19, 2021. We expect the Parish Priests and Priests-in-charge to lead the faithful of their parishes in a worthy celebration of the year. He disclosed that Votive Masses of St. Joseph are to be celebrated every Wednesday throughout the year, except in Holy Week and the Octave of Easter. Archbishop Martins also directed that the Prayers to St. Joseph should be said at Masses on Wednesdays and Sundays after Post Communion Prayer.
He said that families are encouraged to pray the Prayer to St. Joseph and the Litany of St. Joseph as part of their family devotion. Speaking on Charity Outreach (St Joseph’s Table), the Archbishop directed parishes to organize charity outreach to the poor and needy. He listed the Archdiocesan Events marking the Year of St. Joseph, date, venue, and those to attend as follows: “Friday, March 19, 2021, 10am, there will be inauguration of the Year of St Joseph in the Archdiocese and unveiling of the Archdiocesan Logo of the Year and presentation to the Deans and representatives of the Deaneries at Holy Cross, Cathedral, Lagos. Mass would be televised Live on Lumen Christi.
Those to attend are all Deans and two representatives from each Deanery, Major Superiors of Female Religious Congregations, two representatives from the Archdiocesan Laity Council, two representatives from the CMO and CWO. .“Saturday, May 1, 2021, 10am will be the Mass of the Solemnity of St. Joseph the Worker and blessing of the Grotto of St. Joseph at Marian Shrine, Maryland. Those to attend are different groups of workers, professionals and YCW. “Wednesday, December 8, 2021, will be the closing Mass for the Year of St. Joseph at Marian Shrine, Maryland.” On veneration of the Image of St. Joseph, Archbishop Martins said: “The faithful are encouraged to visit the following parishes where an altar or grotto of St. Joseph would be erected: Holy Cross Cathedral, Lagos, Ss. Philip and James, Lekki, Marian Shrine, Maryland, Church of the Nativity, Festac and St Leo Ikoga Zebbe, Badagry.
He urged priests and associations of the lay faithful to encourage and organize opportunities for reflection on the virtues of St. Joseph according to the themes set out as follows: April: St Joseph, a beloved father. May: St Joseph, a tender loving Father.June: St Joseph, an obedient father. July: St Joseph, a Beloved Father. August: St Joseph, an accepting father. September: St Joseph, a Beloved Father.
… Announces celebration of Holy Week, Tridiuum
The Catholic Archbishop of Lagos, Most Rev, (Dr.) Alfred Adewale Martins has said that the Chrism Mass 2021: will be celebrated at Holy Cross Cathedral and the Catholic Church of the Nativity, Festac on the scheduled dates. He said that all Priests jn the Archdiocese are expected to be in attendance. He also directed Deans of Deaneries in the Archdiocese, to arrange for two delegates to be sent from each parish in their Deaneries, while only the Presidents and Secretaries of Archdiocesan Laity Council, Archdiocesan CWO, CMO, CYON and Papal Knights or any two persons that they choose should also participate at the Masses to represent them. For Good Friday, he said that there will not be individual Veneration of the Cross, rather, a moment of silent Veneration of the Cross when all would kneel gazing at, Jesus on the Cross just before the procession that ends the service.
The Archbishop also directed that the rest of the Triduum should follow the liturgical rites as prescribed. The Archbishop also directed Parish Priests to enforce strict observance of the COVID-19 regulations, as he reminded them that the curfew imposed by government is still on, they can fix the time for Easter vigil Mass ceremonies appropriately. “We expect Parish Priests to enforce strict observance of the COVID-19 regulations and also to take note that the curfew imposed by government is still in force as they fix the time for Easter Vigil ceremonies. The ceremonies should end with enough time for people to get back to their homes before the curfew”, he said.