CCP in a statement said an average of 800 people per day attends the novena masses. In 2018, it reached a total of almost 2,000 patrons during the Christmas Eve Mass. This tradition is now on its 15th year.
The renowned Philippine Madrigal Singers will again be the mass choir who will lead the 100-voice chorale in rendering “Carol of the Bells” and Handel’s “Messiah” (Hallelujah Chorus) for the Christmas Eve Mass at the CCP Main Theater. The said choral groups from the Madz Et.Al. (choral groups being managed by the Philippine Madrigal Singers) will also perform a 30-minute pre-mass carols to serenade the mass goers.
CCP said that before the start of the mass, an excerpt of “Panunuluyan” shall be performed by the Tanghalang Pilipino (CCP Resident Company for theater) Actors’ Company. The said mass will be officiated by Fr. Mario Sobrejuanite, SSP.
Being one of the longest and most popular Filipino traditions in the country, the Simbang Gabi is a nine-day novena to the Blessed Mother which starts on December 16 early morning and culminates with a midnight mass on December 24. It is said that its roots began in Mexico in 1587, where the Pope granted the petition of Fray Diego de Soria, prior of the convent of San Agustin Acolman, to hold Christmas mass outdoors since the Church could not accommodate the many people attending the evening mass.
For more information, please call the CCP Venue Operations Division at 8832-1125 loc. 1412/1413. (PIA-NCR/CCP)
By Angelie Villapando