Father Nonnette C. Legaspi, the parish priest of Mary the Queen Parish (MTQP), Quezon City, Philippines, washed the feet of the 12 Persons with Disabilities (PWDs) on April 6, 2023, during the Maundy Thursday Celebration to raise awareness of the church's acceptance of people with disabilities.
Reflecting on the celebration, Father Legaspi said that it is aimed "To create awareness of the universal church and to open her doors to Catholics living with disabilities."
"We focused on PWD catechetical formation and spiritual uplift. Because most PWDs rely on their families, we also involve them in church affairs and the sacraments," the priest told RVA News.
Furthermore, he explained that the church's role is to introduce them to the sacraments. Some PWDs, however, already play the roles of lectors and Eucharistic ministers.
"I am very happy to do this liturgy. They were deeply touched and experienced this for the first time," said Father Legaspi.
He said that their parish has 25 Persons with Disabilities who are very regular and active in the church.
According to the priest, "There are 1.4 million Catholic persons with disabilities worldwide, and this Easter, let us bring hope and love into their lives."
He also said they had hired people who knew sign language to explain the mass online so their members could keep their faith and hope every Sunday.
The Diocese of Novaliches, Quezon City's Mary the Queen Parish (MTQP), is one of the most active parishes in the country.
In addition to the twelve disabled individuals, more than 350 people attended this celebration.
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