A Quiapo Church official appealed for the devotees’ understanding following the cancellation of the grand procession of the image of the Black Nazarene in January 2021.
“Sa mga deboto, sana po maging malawak ang pang-unawa (natin) sa sitwasyon. Bagama’t tuloy ang pagdiriwang ng Kapistahan ng Poong Nazareno, hindi na katulad ng nakasanayan. Sana maunawaan ito ng mga deboto [To the devotees, I hope (we) will have a broad understanding of the situation. Although the celebration of the Feast of the Black Nazarene will continue, it will not be the same as before. I hope the devotees will understand this],” said Quiapo Church Parochial Vicar Fr. Douglas Badong in an interview.
Badong said that they understand the cancellation of the traditional event because of the threat of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic.
“Naiintindihan namin ang desisyon sa ngayon ng local government at ni Mayor (Francisco “Isko Moreno” Domagoso), dahil nga sa sitwasyon ngayon hindi mapayagan [We understand the decision of the local government and the mayor given the current situation, it cannot be allowed],” he said.
The prelate said that they already submitted proposals to the government on how to celebrate the Feast of the Black Nazarene in a different manner. One of the proposals is to hold a motorcade of the image of the Black Nazarene around the vicinity of the Quiapo Church.
“Sa mungkahi namin ay motorcade. Yun ang iniintay pa natin na desisyon [Our suggestion is motorcade. We are still waiting for their decision on that],” he said.
Quiapo Church officials are also proposing to conduct simultaneous feast day masses in the different parts of the country during the religious event.
“Isa sa mga suggestion ay imbes na tao ang magpunta (sa Manila), kami nalang pupunta sa mga lugar. Mga simultaneous fiesta masses sa Kamaynilaan, sa norte, sa timog. Sabay-sabay na misa. May replica din ng Nazareno [One of the suggestions is that instead of people going (to Manila), we will just go to them through simultaneous fiesta masses in Metro Manila, in the north, and in the south. There will also be replicas of the Nazarene],” said Quiapo Church Rector Msgr. Hernando Coronel.
This will be the first time that the annual procession has been cancelled. Every year, the Black Nazarene procession draws millions of devotees as it is believed that the said dark-skinned statue of Jesus Christ has miraculous powers.
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