Thunder and lightning strike as PGMA prays

BAGUIO CITY — As soon as the opening mass of the Luzon North Regional Rural Congress in the Baguio City Cathedral begun with President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo as a guest, unexpected bolts of lightning and bursts of thunder, followed by a sudden and heavy down pour reverberated over the church.

“It was like in a horror movie,” said one of the bystanders outside the church kidding her companion that it was because PGMA was inside and God is just fidgeting.

Just before the mass started, the weather was perfectly sunny with cotton-like clouds and blue skies and it has been days since the last rains.

Because of the security concerns for the president, the Presidential Security Group (PSG) on orders, did not allow several of the regular Baguio churchgoers attend the mass Wednesday.

“I do not care about the president, I just want to go to mass,” said one lady as she turned her back after giving up on trying to enter the Cathedral.

But one lady did not give up and instead loudly berated the PSG causing a scene in front of the church’s main entrance.

Halfway through the mass, a Malaca–ang staff ordered the PSG to let the people in.

As soon as PGMA exited the church through the side door, one of the mass-goers said aloud “Ayan, nag-simba na siya, sana bukas mura na ang bigas,” (There, she heard mass already, I hope the price of rice goes down tomorrow) and the people around her started to laugh as if it was a funny joke.

When the presidential convoy left the church premises, one old lady carrying several plastic bags tapped the shoulder of this reporter and asked if the president has left.

When asked why she was looking for the president, she just frustratingly replied, “Gusto ko lang sana humingi ng tulong,” (I just want to ask for help) then started to walk away.

The convoy was met by protesters just outside the Cathedral gate. (See story in this issue.)

PGMA was invited to grace the opening mass with the Apostolic Nuncio in the Philippines the Most Reverend Edward Joseph Adams as the main celebrant and homilist. # Cye Reyes

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