'Bawal ang nakapaa': How Quiapo Church will celebrate Black Nazarene feast

ABS-CBN News

Posted at Oct 23 2020 09:48 AM | Updated as of Oct 23 2020 10:50 AM

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MANILA - More misa novenas, no barefoot devotees. These and more are just some of the plans of the Quiapo Church to celebrate next year's Feast of the Black Nazarene after the city government canceled the 2021 traslacion due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Fr. Douglas Badong, parochial vicar of the Minor Basilica of the Black Nazarene, said cancellation of the annual procession does not mean the church is canceling the celebration of the feast.

"Tuloy po ang pagdiriwang ng Pista ng Poong Nazareno, hindi lang katulad ng dati," he told ABS-CBN's TeleRadyo.

"Bale hahabaan natin ang novenario, lahat ng misa dito sa Quiapo ay magiging misa novena para sa Kapistahang Nazareno. Oras oras po 'yun mula madaling araw hanggang gabi 'yun po ang mas pag iigtingin natin," he added.

Fr. Badong said the church is urging devotees not to walk barefoot inside the church, an annual tradition for Black Nazarene devotees, due to fears of COVID-19 infection.

"Kung iisipin natin 'yung mga droplet ng pawis, baka mapunta sa paa nila. Baka pati 'yung tradisyon at kultura na mamamanata sila, hindi ko maimumungkahi," he said.

He said the image of the Black Nazarene will still be brought out but devotees will not be allowed to touch it. Replicas of the Black Nazarene will still be blessed during the feast.

LED screens will also be put up inside the church's entry points so that devotees can watch Mass even from outside.

He said another proposal is to ask Catholic parishes all over the country to conduct localized celebrations of the Nazarene including Holy Mass, motorcades and processions when allowed by the local government.

The Manila City government on Friday said it is canceling the grand procession of the life-sized image of the Black Nazarene in January 2021 due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

It will be the first time that the annual traslacion, which draws millions of devotees every year, has been canceled.

ABS-CBN TeleRadyo, October 23, 2020