Nazarene devotees urged not to get drunk
With the yearly celebration of the Black Nazarene just few days away, the rector of Quiapo Church appealed to people not to attend the procession drunk.
Monsignor Jose Clemente has asked for respect for the celebration and the other devotees on Sunday by refraining from drinking alcohol.
“We appeal to devotees to spiritually prepare for the procession by praying and going to Mass. Don’t go if you are not prepared,” said Ignacio said in a press conference Wednesday.
“Don’t go if you are intoxicated. Instead we should cleanse ourselves as we prepare for this important occasion,” he said.
The priest also called on devotees not to bring children or sick relatives with them because of the expected pushing and shoving just to get near the Black Nazarene statue.
“We appeal to families not to bring their kids because a lot of accidents occur with everyone wanting to touch the image of the Nazarene,” he said.
Ignacio instead advised parents to take their children to the Quirino Grandstand in Rizal Park, Manila for the “pahalik” (kissing) of the image.
A liturgical celebration and a healing service at the park will be held on Jan. 8, and will be followed by an overnight vigil.
A Mass will be also held on January 9, followed by the procession returning the image back to the Quiapo Church.
The feast of the Black Nazarene is considered one of the most spectacular religious events that take place in the country.
Every year thousands of devotees from all walks of life come to the district of Quiapo to take part in the procession as a way of strengthening their faith or fulfilling their vow to Lord.
During the procession, some mayhem always took place as devotees struggle to get close to the Black Nazarene image.
Many believe that wiping a piece of cloth or just touching the image can wash away sins, cure illnesses or bring miracles. CBCP News