WHEN Pope Francis visited the Philippines in January, one of his most memorable encounters was with the Filipino youth. Held at the University of Santo Tomas, the Pope made time to hear the sentiments of students and homeless children like little Glyzelle Palomar. She asked him, “Bakit po pumapayag ang Diyos na may ganitong nangyayari . . . kahit walang kasalanan ang mga bata [Why does God allow these things to happen to us . . .
even if we are not at fault]?”
Clearly moved and pained, the Vicar of Christ replied, “Glyzelle is the only one who has put a question for which there is no answer, and she wasn’t even able to express it in words, but rather in tears . . . When the heart is able to ask itself and cry, then we can understand something.”
This is just one of the many memorable moments that UST, the oldest university in Asia, aims to immortalize through the coffee table book Pope Francis@ UST: Bringing Christ to the Youth.
Launched on Wednesday at the UST Blessed Buenaventura Garcia Paredes, O.P., Building, the 160-page book compiles vivid photographs of His Holiness in UST, along with the inspiring, touching and blessed messages he had for the youth and the rest of the country.
UST rector Rev. Fr. Herminio Dagahoy, O.P. captured the significance of Pope Francis visit to the school when he said, “The university is the place where we learn the greatest lesson in life, and that is love. May this coffee table book be a source of genuine inspiration as its pages remind us of Pope Francis.”
He also thanked the team behind what is sure to become a collector’s item, as well as everyone who supported and took part in the papal visit.
“Our heartfelt gratitude goes to those people who have been part of this historic event in the University of Santo Tomas—volunteers, participants, even to those who wanted to come into our grounds but were never able to make it in… deep in our hearts we would like them to be a part of this historic event,” added the rector.
When asked what he thinks Pope Francis would say if he sees the coffee table book, Fr. Dagohoy replied, “I think he would just smile and he will remember everything.”
The book launch also coincided with a media appreciation gathering for members of the press who covered the Papal Visit in the Royal and Pontifical University.
Representatives from different media outlets for print and television were recognized for their support, and were given a copy of the newly launched coffee table book. The Manila Times president and CEO Dante “Klink” Ang 2nd was present at the event.
Members of the Catholic Church who greatly contributed to the success of the papal visit were further recognized led by the guest of honor Apostolic Nuncio to the Philippines, Archbishop Giuseppe Pinto, D.D., who also had the distinction of receiving the very first p copy of Pope Francis@ UST.