Visita Iglesia 2020: Holy Cross Church (Noveleta, Cavite)

"And as they were leading Him away, they apprehended a certain one, Simon of Cyrene, as he was returning from the countryside. And they imposed the cross on him to carry after Jesus." (Luke 23:26)

It was just an ordinary day for Simon. He just returned to Jerusalem from the countryside to do, maybe, ordinary things. Suddenly, he was forced to  do the extraordinary and be part of a terrifying spectacle. The soldiers pressed him to carry Jesus' cross.

About three weeks ago, many of us were living our ordinary lives and then the government declared lockdowns due to Wuhan Virus. Suddenly, all of us were forced to carry additional burdens. Some were pressed to carry heavier burdens by being frontliners. Others have crosses that crush them to the ground, particularly the beggars and the no-work-no-pay employees. 

Just like Simon of Cyrene, our ordinary lives were disrupted and we are pressed to carry an extraordinary cross. The question is: are we like Simon of Cyrene who carry the cross with Jesus? This is a good point to meditate while we are still in Enhanced Community Quarantine. 

Today is Holy Tuesday and the church that I will feature today fits Simon of Cyrene's predicament. That church is the Holy Cross Church in Noveleta, Cavite. 

Holy Cross Church in Noveleta, Cavite

Located in downtown Noveleta and hidden behind commercial establishments is the town's parish church dedicated to the Holy Cross.

Compared to other churches in the neighboring towns, the Holy Cross Parish Church is relatively new.

Holy Cross Church in Noveleta, Cavite

The reason for this is that the town of Noveleta was a barrio of Cavite El Viejo (now Kawit) for a long time. It only became a separate town in 1868 but it remained under the parish of Kawit. Noveleta got its independent parish when Holy Cross Parish was established in 1937.

Holy Cross Church is cozy since only two columns of pews can fit in front of the altar. There are additional chairs at the side but it faces the side altars. This arrangement is similar to the one I saw in the parish church of the nearby town of Rosario, Cavite.

Inside Holy Cross Church in Noveleta, Cavite

The church’s altar is simple with only the big image of the crucified Jesus in the center.

Altar of Holy Cross Church in Noveleta, Cavite

The tabernacle is missing at the main altar because it was placed at the side altar.

Tabernacle of Holy Cross Church in Noveleta, Cavite

I saw the same arrangement in the parish church of Rosario, Cavite. I don’t know if this is the typical arrangement for churches in this part of Cavite.

The parish is placed under the patronage of the Holy Cross and St. Helena of Constantinople, who is known for her search for the cross of Jesus.

Saint Helen of Constantinople in Holy Cross Church in Noveleta, Cavite

Also honored in the church is Our Lady of Porta Vaga, who is considered the Queen and Patroness of the whole Province of Cavite.

Our Lady of Porta Vaga in Holy Cross Church in Noveleta, Cavite

Aside from the Virgin Mary as Our Lady of Porta Vaga and St. Helena, the people of Noveleta also honor Jesus Christ through the symbol of the Holy Cross.

Holy Cross of Noveleta
Holy Cross during a procession in Noveleta. (Source: Holy Cross Parish FB page)

The cross is the symbol of shameful death for the pagan Romans. But for us Christians, we considered the cross as the victory of Jesus Christ and the symbol of our salvation. This Holy Week, may we put into our mind Jesus’ death on the cross and may we obey His command that we take up our crosses and follow Him.

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Those who wish to contact the parish priest of Holy Cross Church should call telephone no. (046) 438-1921 or go to the Holy Cross Church Facebook page.

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Prayer to the Holy Cross

Beautiful wood on which my Lord died, to give me eternal light and free me from the contrary one, before You I humble myself and reverently implore my Lord Jesus Christ, for the sufferings that over you He received in His Most Holy Passion, that you grant me the spiritual and corporal goods that may profit my soul.

Elevated before the world you are a luminous lantern that gathers around you the Christian faithful to intone songs of glory to Christ the King, the God-Man who, being the owner of all that was created, allowed Himself to be crucified on you for the redemption of the human race.

Over you an astounding mystery for the redemption of the entire World was performed which, since then, frees the Christian from original guilt and allows him to be called son of the Eternal God and aspire for Celestial Glory.

Blessed you be!

For centuries, you were among the pagans a symbol of battle and affront and yet today you are the emblem of the Christian and the hope of being forgiven by the sublime sacrifice of my Lord Jesus Christ, Whom we wait to serve and honor for all eternity. Amen

Holy Cross of my Jesus, He expired to give us light; today I give you my reverence.

O, Precious and Holy Cross!

The path that you mark for us in this world, we will follow, and may the Cross we always embrace, and with your symbol, overcome the world. At your feet today I find myself, my Divine Redeemer, make it so that with holy patience, I carry in the world my own cross.

May Thy Holy Cross descend and extend itself over all evil and danger; may the Holy Cross defend us.

O Omnipotent God, who suffered on the Cross death so as to redeem us from our own sins:

O Holy Cross of Jesus Christ, be my true light.

O Holy Cross of Jesus Christ, have pity on me.

O Holy Cross of Jesus Christ, be my hope.

O Holy Cross of Jesus Christ, distance from me all fear from death.

O Holy Cross of Jesus Christ, overflow in my soul everlasting good.

O Holy Cross of Jesus Christ, distance from me all evil and misfortune.

O Holy Cross of Jesus Christ, make me enter into the path of salvation.

O Holy Cross of Jesus Christ, preserve me from all temporal and corporal accidents so that I may adore you always as my Nazarean Jesus, to whom I implore to have mercy over me.

Make it so that all visible or invisible malignant spirits flee from me for ever and ever. Amen

In honor of the Precious Blood of Jesus Christ and of his most painful death; in honor of His Resurrection and his Divine Incarnation through which He leads us to Eternal Life; that, just as it is most certain that Jesus Christ was born on Christmas, that He was crucified on Holy Friday, that Joseph and Nicodemus removed Jesus Christ from the Holy Cross, and that Jesus Christ Ascended into Heaven, that He deign to free me from the attacks of my enemies, visible as well as invisible, from today forward, for ever and ever, Amen

All most powerful God, in your hands I place my soul, Jesus, Mary, Joseph, Anna and Joaquim, my Jesus, for the bitterness you suffered for me, on the most Holy Cross, principally when Your Sacred Soul separated from Your body, have pity on my soul when it separates from this world.

O Jesus, grant me the valor to bear my cross in imitation of Yours: teach me to carry with patience all the sufferings and my fear, and may they all be transformed into virtue.

May the Omnipotence of the Father deign to cover me with the Love and Wisdom of the Holy Spirit; deign to receive and lead my soul to Eternal Life, through Jesus Christ Our Lord. So be it. Amen

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Simon of Cyrene Carries Jesus' Cross
(Source: My Catholic Life)

We are now in the second church for our virtual Visita Iglesia so we pray the:

If you missed the earlier stations, I suggest that you visit the churches that we featured earlier in this year’s virtual Visita Iglesia:


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