More parishes announce Simbang Gabi events
Several additional parishes have announced events for Simbang Gabi (evening Mass), the Filipino tradition of a novena of Masses preceding Christmas Eve. If not listed below, or published in the Nov. 21 issue of The Catholic Voice (ww.catholicvoiceoakland.org), check with your parish for Simbang Gabi activities.
Simbang Gabi traces its origin to Mexico, when in 1587, an evening Christmas Mass was held outdoors to accommodate the huge number of people.
A century later, missionaries brought it to the Philippines, where it was expanded into nine consecutive Masses before Christmas as a way of teaching the people about the birth of the Messiah.
Celebrating the Masses before dawn allowed the farmers, mostly men, to come to church with their families and start the day with worship before they went off to their fields. The Christmas Eve Mass is called Misa de Gallo, Spanish for "rooster's Mass."
Filipino immigrants bring the tradition with them as they move to, or work in, foreign countries.
New events include:
Christ the King, 199 Brandon Road, Pleasant Hill, Masses at 6:30 p.m. Dec. 15-23 followed by light refreshments in the parish hall. Information: Rudy Bautista 925-372-6227 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Our Lady of Good Counsel, 2500 Bermuda Ave., San Leandro, Masses at 7:30 p.m. Dec. 16-23, and 6 a.m. Dec. 24. Fellowship after each Mass. Contact Rev. Jan Rudzewicz, 925-348-1284.
Our Lady of Guadalupe, 41933 Blacow Road, Fremont, Mass at 6 a.m. Dec. 16-24, followed by refreshments. Contact: Corrie Budnik, 510-396-5419 or email@example.com.
St. Clement Parish, 750 Calhoun St., Hayward, Mass at 5:30 a.m., followed by breakfast in McCollum Hall, Dec. 16-24. Contact Nenette Ebalo, firstname.lastname@example.org or the parish office at 510-582-7282.
St. John the Baptist, 11150 San Pablo Ave., El Cerrito, Mass at 7 p.m. Dec. 15-23, except at 5 p.m. Dec. 17 and 6 p.m. (Portuguese) Dec. 18. Hospitality follows after Mass.
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