Heart relic of St. Camillus deepens devotion in Albay

LEGAZPI CITY ---- The incorrupt heart relic of St. Camillus de Lellis, the patron saint of the sick, doctors and nurses arrived here on Friday drawing hundreds of devotees.

“The visit of the incorrupt heart aims to promote and spread the devotion to Saint Camillus de Lellis of the Sick, Nurses and Hospitals,” a Church leader said during a press conference held Friday afternoon.

Fr. Gabriel Garcia, from the Ministers of the Infirm, also known as Camillian priests, said the visit will also relive and will revitalize the merciful passion for Christ of St. Camillus who initiated the new school of charity.

“We are here also to celebrate the greatness of St. Camillus who offered his love and esteem to other people especially to the poor and the sick and to achieve the humanization and evangelization of healthcare and social structures” Garcia added.

The preserved heart relic celebrated a mass in Camillian Sisters in Guinobatan town and visited the Bicol Regional Teaching and Training Hospital (BRTTH).

The Camillian priest also reminded the devotees in caring for the sick to “put your hearts to your hands,” like St. Camillus did during his days in Italy.

“See Christ in the sick and look the sick as Christ, treat the sick as your only son or daughter,” Garcia added.

St. Camillus De Lellis’s heart, placed in a crystal glass, remained intact and incorrupted over 404 years after his death.

A special Mass was held at the Albay Cathedral at 8:00 p.m. and devotees venerated the relic until morning.

The relic will also visit the Visayas and Mindanao in the succeeding weeks until March 31.