Every January 9, millions of devotees participate in the annual procession of the Black Nazarene to celebrate its feast day.
Some overzealous devotees even scamper just to get near and touch the centuries-old image.
Although the devotion to the Black Nazarene is popular to Filipino Catholics, there may be some things about this “miraculous” image that some people may not know about.
Here are some of them:
- The life-sized image is in a semi-kneeling position to indicate His struggle to recover from a heavy fall.
- There is no definite account as to the origin of the statue but it was reportedly the work of an unidentified Mexican artist who chose to render the image in dark brownish-mulatto color, like his skin tone.
- The statue, entrusted to an unknown Recollect priest, was brought across the Pacific Ocean aboard a galleon that arrived in Manila at an undetermined date.
- No written evidence or account on the exact date as to when the image of the Black Nazarene was officially transferred to Quiapo but based on a certain research, it was the transfer was made before the second burning of the Quiapo Church which happened on January 15, 1791.
- To preserve the head of the original statue, it was placed permanently behind the main altar of Quiapo Church. It was attached to a replica of the body.
- The body of the original is on the image being venerated in the chapel near the sacristy. It is this image that is being brought out during the procession.
- It is being brought in procession every January 1 for the Thanksgiving procession, January 9 for its Feast Day and Good Friday.
- A hand carried platform is being used to carry the Nazareno during January 1 while an andas (carriage) is being used for the Feast Day procession.
- The men who volunteer to pull the rope of steer the carroza of the image are called “mamamasans“.
- There may be some things still that is still unknown regarding the Black Nazarene, but as what church officials always say what is important is for one to “discover Christ every day.”
- Devotees to the Black Nazarene have attested to experiencing miracles and having their wishes for health, career, family granted because of their strong faith.
There you have it, your quick guide to the feast of the Black Nazarene.