Naga City devotees join Black Nazarene celebration amid pandemic
By Myrna Bermudo
On the 33rd year of the devotion, amid pandemic, thousands of devotees of the Black Nazarene participated in the novena and feast day masses at the Parish of the Holy Cross in Tabuco, Naga City.
“Why are you frightened? Do you still have no faith?” ( Mk. 4:40) was the theme for this year’s celebration.
Novena masses every 5:30 in the afternoon were held from December 31, 2021 to January 8, 2022. Praying of the rosary and novena plus singing of the perdon were done before the Eucharistic Celebration.
The parish strictly imposed health protocols for the safety of the churchgoers. Members of the Barangay Tanod, police officers, public safety office and various church committee gave assistance to the devotees.
For a safer celebration, devotees were invited to participate in all the masses which were live streamed in the following social media accounts: Holy Cross Parish Tabuco, Hijos De Nazareno Lerma and Archdiocese of Caceres.
Caceres Archbishop Rolando J. Tirona, OCD, DD, presided the Eucharistic Celebration on the feast day of the Black Nazarene, January 9 at five in the afternoon.
A mobile procession was held along the main streets of Naga City after the pontifical mass. Devotees riding in their vehicles participated in the motorcade procession.
The devotion was introduced in 1972 by Flavio Redondo of Burabod, Palsong, Bula, Camarines Sur. Based on the history records provided by the parish, there were only ten people who participated in the penitential procession in that year, 1972.
In 1975, Redondo commissioned a sculptor to carve a five-feet image of Amang Nazareno. It was a gift to the Colambo family of Lerma. Olimpio and Leona Colambo greatly helped in the propagation and devotion to Jesus Nazareno. This image is now seen in every occasion of the Black Nazarene in Naga City.
Year 2022 marks the 50th year of the Hijos de Nazareno Bicol Unit since it was founded. Based in Lerma, Naga City, it is a religious association devoted to a mission under the patronage of Jesus Nazareno. Some of its members, wearing maroon t-shirts, actively participated in the novena masses, on the feast day itself and during the mobile procession.
On the Feast of the Black Nazarene, the parish of Holy Cross in Tabuco, through its social media account, acknowledged the efforts and sacrifices of everyone who has become God’s instruments in its mission to enrich and propagate the devotion.
Start them young! Wearing face mask and observing health protocols, a young devotee of Black Nazarene carrying a miniature image of Jesus Nazareno attends mass at the Parish of Holy Cross in Tabuco, Naga City. /MB (Photo credit: Parish Commission on Communications of Holy Cross Parish Tabuco)