NY Archbishop allows ‘Simbang Gabi’ at consulate

By Don Tagala, ABS-CBN North America Bureau

Posted at Dec 09 2011 11:48 AM | Updated as of Dec 09 2011 07:48 PM

NEW YORK - Simbang Gabi sa Konsulado is back in full swing. The celebration of full masses at the Philippine Consulate in New York has now been authorized by New York Archbishop Timothy Dolan. 

This comes after members of the Filipino American community wrote Dolan, urging him to reverse his earlier decision to ban Simbang Gabi at the consulate.   
The New York Archbishop told Philippine Consul General Mario de Leon that they can now continue with their Simbang Gabi sa Konsulado masses at the Kalayaan Hall of the consulate. 
The archbishop said that since preparations have already been made, shutting down the celebration will be inconvenient to organizers and massgoers. 
Dolan's change of heart came as the New York Times reported on the brouhaha, and after critics likened those who opposed Simbang Gabi sa Konsulado to the Grinch that stole Christmas.   
The consulate said a committee will be formed to discuss to explore the possibility of continuing this tradition at the Philippine consulate permanently. 
Dolan also mentioned his intention of possibly hosting the nine-day Simbang Gabi at St. Patrick's Cathedral, instead of the usual Simbang Gabi sa Katedral's one-night mass.   

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