MANILA - More than a dozen masses will be held in Quiapo Church on January 9 as this year's Traslacion or the grand procession of the Black Nazarene is canceled due to the COVID-19 pandemic, a Church official said Sunday.
Fifteen masses will be held in the home of the Black Nazarene to prevent crowds as many are expected to gather in Quiapo Church, said Rev. Msgr. Hernando Coronel, rector of the Minor Basilica of the Black Nazarene.
"Tens of thousands" had already attended this year's First Friday mass, he said.
"Nag-report naman tayo nung First Friday, nung New Year, talagang libo-libong tao. Salamat sa Diyos - takot na takot kami sa pangangamba na ma-accuse kami na nilabag namin ang social distancing - na-manage naman namin. Salamat sa kapulisan, sa barangay, at saka mga hijos namin," he told ABS-CBN's TeleRadyo.
(We reported that there were thousands who attended the First Friday mass. Thank God - we were afraid we would be accused of violating social distancing - we managed it thanks to the police, the barangay and our hijos.)
On January 9, mass services will begin at 4:30 a.m. while 8 LED screen stations will be set up, where communion will also be given, Coronel said. The last mass will be at 10:15 p.m., to be presided over by Coronel.
To limit crowds, 8 masses will be held at the Sta. Cruz Church, 6 at the San Sebastian Church, and 3 at the Nazarene Catholic School, according to Coronel.
The image of the Black Nazarene is also displayed at the balcony of Quiapo Church since Christmas, he added.