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Duterte asked to declare Oct. 26 as holiday in honor of Cardinal Vidal

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Cebuanos are pushing for the declaration of Oct. 26 as a holiday in honor of the late Cebu Archbishop Emeritus Ricardo Cardinal Vidal, who is slated to be buried at the Cebu Metropolitan Cathedral’s mausoleum here Thursday.

Presidential Assistant for the Visayas Michael Dino, on behalf of the Cebuanos, has asked Malacañang to declare Oct. 26 a holiday.

“In light of the requests by local government units in Cebu and the ardent desire of the Cebuanos, I have communicated to the Office of the President, through Executive Secretary Salvador Medialdea, our wish to have Oct. 26 declared a holiday to honor Ricardo Cardinal Vidal,” Dino said in a press statement issued late Friday night.

“Indeed a pivotal shepherd for 29 years in our Archdiocese, the declaration of a holiday on the occasion of his interment will enable our people to pay their last respects to the beloved Cardinal,” he added.

Dino said the Office of the Executive Secretary was studying the request and he was looking forward to a positive response from Malacañang.

The presidential assistant paid his final respects to Vidal last Thursday at the Cebu Metropolitan Cathedral.

Philippine Ambassador to the Holy See Mercedes Arrastia-Tuason also went to the wake of the prelate on Friday.

Cebu Archdiocese media liaison officer Msgr. Joseph Tan said Pope Francis will be sending a representative to attend Vidal’s funeral on Thursday. The papal legate is expected to read the Pope’s message during the funeral mass at the Cathedral.

Aside from the papal legate, Manila Archbishop Luis Antonio Cardinal Tagle, Archbishop Emeritus Gaudencio Cardinal Rosales, and Cotabato Archbishop Orlando Cardinal Quevedo are also expected to arrive and spearhead the funeral mass for Vidal.

Meanwhile, the remains of the Cardinal were transferred to the San Pedro Calungsod Shrine early Saturday morning.

Hundreds of Cebuanos lined the streets from the Cathedral leading to the Shrine on D. Jakosalem St. to witness the caravan carrying the body of Vidal. Some even climbed the trees along the route just to have a passing glimpse of the hearse.

The move to the Shrine coincides with the fifth anniversary of St. Calungsod’s sainthood. Vidal’s remains will be at the Shrine until 7 p.m. Saturday, after which he will be returned to the Cathedral. (PNA)

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