The Tagalog version of The Lord's Prayer, Ama Namin, was sung during Pope Francis' mass at the Vatican on Sunday to mark 500 years of Christianity in the Philippines, giving goosebumps to Facebook users who shared one video of the hymn thousands of times overnight.
Facebook user Calvin de los Reyes recorded that portion of the mass and posted it on his page. Overnight, it got nearly 20,000 reactions and nearly as many shares, mostly from people he doesn't know. His profile is private but the video is a public post.
"I was so moved when I heard it. As a Filipino, I felt closer to God," he told reportr. The Manila Cathedral Facebook, which carried the livestream in the Philippines, got 12,000 reactions and 3,000 shares on its post.
Spanish colonizers brought Christianity to the Philippines in 1521 and the faith has been one of Spain's enduring legacies. Roughly 80% of the country's 100 million people are Catholic, making it the Vatican's outpost in Asia.
Pope Francis, who delivered his homily in Italian, said "the joy is evident" in Filipinos who practice the faith, according to a translation from Vatican News.
“We see it in your eyes, on your faces, in your songs and in your prayers,” he said. “I want to thank you for the joy you bring to the whole world and to our Christian communities.”
Luis Antonio Cardinal Tagle, the highest-ranked Filipino in the Church heirarchy, thanked Francis on behalf of the country, calling him Lolo Kiko (Grandfather Francis).
The Pope's first and only visit to the Philippines so far was in January 2015, where he visited survivors of Super Typhoon Yolanda (Haiyan) in Tacloban City. He braved a typhoon to celebrate mass before tens of thousands of weeping and drenched devotees near the airport.
Some 100 people wearing face masks and properly spaced in between pews filled St. Peter's Basilica for the Sunday morning mass that started 5 p.m. Manila time.
The procession started with the crowd waving white handkerchiefs in the air as a young woman in Sinulog attire carried a Sto. Nino icon. Beside her, a young man in a barong tagalog carried a brown cross.
At the end of the mass, a Filipino boy and girl joined the Pope in offering flowers to an image of the Virgin Mary.