Justice Consuelo Y. Santiago and Maria Paz M. Weigand

Justice Consuelo Y. Santiago and Maria Paz M. Weigand

‘Worry ends when Faith begins.’ —2 Corinthinans 5:7

Faith is being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do not see.’ —Hebrews 11:1

First of all, let us thank our Father God for giving all of us life, strength, and courage through this pandemic. We, his human children, are still struggling. But knowing the Father is with us always is a life-saver.  

Happy Father’s Day to all the fathers amas, daddies, papastataysitays out there, but especially to my sons, beloved JunieDavid, and AJ, and my favorite son-in law Andrew. My sons had the greatest “father” model while they were growing up and Andrew caught up with Sonny when he married his only daughter.

Today they are all fathers and I am proud of them for giving me handsome, healthy, lively apos, and one beautiful Amanda. Remember, men, it’s easy to co-produce a baby but to be a real “father” is a sacred trust. 

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Now let us hear from devotees of the Lady of Lipa.

We all realize that the statue of Our Lady, Mary Mediatrix of all Grace has been approved by the Vatican for public viewing and veneration. There is nothing wrong about this, although the apparition itself has not yet been officially approved. But remember that, contrary to the claims of some local exorcists, there is nothing diabolical with the Lady’s statue or the person of the visionary, the late Teresing Castillo. This is why the Carmel church of Lipa is now a pilgrimage site for her devotees especially every first Saturdays and on Mary’s feast days.

Devotees from all over are faithful to the Mediatrix in Lipa. It is an acquired attraction to the invitation of the Lady who asked everyone to pray for all through the rosary and to offer their prayers to her Son. 

My youngest sister, Paz Munson Weigand, is one such devotee. Now approaching 70, she has gone through a lot of tragedies, which would have made someone else give up. She, however, has remained steadfast in her devotion to Mary. 

A retired teacher, she was widowed early, left with four children, had two cancers in four years. Ten years later, just when she was recovering from the two cancers, she met an accident on EDSA and barely survived. Then still in the hospital, she had to have her left leg cut off and has since ambled along with a prosthesis.

At present, she is blessed by her devotion. Her eldest daughter is a registered nurse in Vancouver (OR), her second daughter a professional, her third a lawyer, her only son a businessman.

“Our Lady, Mediatrix of all Grace is my rock of Gibraltar, my refuge, my strength. She, together with Sister Teresing Castillo, has been my comforter. My siblings, Ates CieloLita, and Deedee, and Kuya Gabby have been guiding me in my journey through my dark tunnels. My ovarian and breast cancers 26 years ago were but stumbling blocks from which I gamely stood-up with Mary’s help. Every first Saturday, we would hear Mass at Mama Mediatrix of All Grace at 6 a.m. in Lipa. This monthly pilgrimage has made me a more devoted daughter of Mama Mary. The educational accomplishments of my treasures are the gifts from above. Everything that we have now are nothing without her, our health of mind, body, and soul.”

Ma. Paz is a member of the “classmates of Lipa” flock that meets every first Saturday for 6 a.m. Mass at the Carmel convent. Then they go to the bahay kubo of the Buenaventura sisters just across for breakfast and fellowship. Every month, a birthday celebrant treats the whole group for breakfast.

Another faithful member is retired Supreme Court Justice Consuelo Y. Santiago.

To Jesus, through Mary… this is the basis of my devotion to Our Lady, Mediatrix of All Grace, mother of our Lord Jesus Christ, mother of the Church, and co-Redemptrix of Christ. She is the model of purity, obedience to the will of God, humility, and fidelity,” says Justice Elo.

Her devotion started in Lipa Carmel when a friend invited her to join a first Saturday Mass. That was more than 25 years ago. From then, Justice Elo has always been present at Lipa Carmel every first Saturday of the month to pay homage to Our Lady.

“Through her intercession, I have received abundant blessings, answered prayers, comfort in grief and support in tribulations, help in times of crisis, maternal guidance, and protection,” she says. “When I pray the rosary, I hand over the burden of my heart to the merciful heart of Mary. I believe that our Lady is the conduit of all graces, in a mediating role to Jesus, through Mary.”


Source: Manila Bulletin (