Ulaanbaatar (Agenzia Fides) - Bishop Wenceslao Padilla, Apostolic Prefect of Mongolia, who died from a heart attack on September 25 (see Fides 26/9/2018), three days before his 69th birthday, was buried in Ulaanbaatar on October 14, 2018.
The funeral mass was celebrated in the Cathedral of Saints Peter and Paul Ulaanbaatar on Sunday, October 14 at 9:30 am, in front of an assembly of 1,500 people.
About 1,000 people attended the novena, which saw the faithful gathered in prayer after his death. "It was really moving, and the funeral ceremony was actually a thanksgiving mass", said Fr. Charles Phukuta, Superior General of the Congregation of the Immaculate Heart of Mary (CICM), called the "Scheut Missionaries", of which Bishop Wenceslao Padilla was a member.
During the homily of the funeral mass, Archbishop Alfred Xuereb, Apostolic Nuncio in South Korea and Mongolia, praised "the love, humility and commitment of the Bishop". Through the Gospel read on the occasion, the Nuncio expressed his conviction that "the Lord rejoices in the work accomplished by Mgr. Wenceslaus Padilla in Mongolia, and tells him: well done, good and faithful servant, come, share the joy of your master" (Mt 25, 23).
The affection of the Mongolian faithful was summarized in a poster displayed in the Cathedral, which read: "Dear beloved Bishop Wens, your life will always be in our heart. You have been a living example for all those you met. It is painful to lose you now, but God knows what is best".
Filipino Bishop Wenceslao Padilla led the foundation of the Catholic Church in Mongolia in 1992. Since then he worked for the welfare of many Mongols, promoting educational programs and social works. He was also known for his involvement in inter-religious dialogue. (MB/PA) (Agenzia Fides, 15/10/2018)