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The altar is the most important point of the church building: where the most sacred mystery of the Eucharist takes place. Our altar table is made of narra wood, with the depiction of the Lord's Supper. Since the sacrament of the Eucharist was instituted on the Last Supper, it must be seen as a meal where the Body and Blood of the Lord Jesus is given to the faithful. The table of the Eucharist is arranged so that the priest may celebrate the Mass facing the people. Candles, two or six, are lit for liturgical celebrations. Two candles are used for Ordinary Time; six candles are used for Sundays, solemnities and expositions of the Blessed Sacrament. A cross, with the body of the Crucified Lord, is placed near the altar. During the celebration of sacred liturgy, the altar is reverenced when the presider kisses it before and after the Mass, when ministers bow to it, and when it is incensed.

The ambo is reserved for the proclamation of the Word of God, the homily and the General Intercessions. Like the altar, the ambo is made of narra wood and is fixed and permanent. Fronting the ambo is the figure of the Holy Spirit who enlightens our minds with the Word proclaimed and with the homily given.

DSCF3180The presider's chair is located behind the altar. The chair is the sign of the priest-celebrant's office of presiding at the liturgical assembly and of guiding the prayer of the people of God. The credence table is found near the presider's chair.  This table stores the liturgical vessels and items that will be used for the Mass.

On the left wall of the sanctuary, one finds the tabernacle with the reserved Blessed Sacrament. A burning lamp is near the tabernacle, a sign that the  Blessed Sacrament is present. Genuflection before the tabernacle (with burning lamp) expresses our belief in the Lord's true presence in the Eucharist.

The right wall, on the otherhand, has the icon of the patroness, Mary Mother of Good Counsel. This is patterned after the icon found at the Shrine of our Lady in Genazzano, Italy.

High above the presider's chair is the image of the Risen Lord, reminding us of the Resurrection which is the central teaching of our Christian faith. This image is set amidst the triangular stained glass depicting the glory of heaven with the angels, the Holy Spirit (with fire), and the Father's creative hands. The triangle symbolizes our Trinitarian faith.

The open Bible is enthroned near the icon of our patroness.  It is through Scriptures that every Christian learns about God's plan for humanity, how He has worked through human history, and above all, how Jesus spoke and taught, applying His message to us in our daily lives.

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cbcp 2 diocese paranaquevatican