The Feast Day of the Black Nazarene will be celebrated beginning on January 8, 2013 in Manila. The festivities will begin with a procession of replicas of the Black Nazarene on January 8, 2013, and will continue with an overnight vigil tonight at the Luneta Grandstand in Manila. The main procession will begin at 8 a.m. on January 9, 2013 and will go from Luneta Park to Quiapo Church. The U.S. Embassy in Manila warns citizens that the area around the embassy will be extremely congested all day on January 9, 2013 due to the high number of participants as well as road closures. (Courtesy: U.S. Embassy in Manila)
According to an Internet source, the Feast of the Black Nazarene is the Philippine’s “largest single festival.” The source goes on to write that “Everyone is hoping to at least be able to touch the life-sized statue of Christ. People would walk through the streets barefooted, as they shout “Viva Senor!”
According to Wikipedia, the Black Nazarene is a life-sized statue of Jesus Christ carrying the cross. Created in Mexico as a fair-skinned man, the statue is believed to have turned black when it survived a fire aboard the vessel which was transporting it from Mexico to the Philippines. Many people believe the statue possesses healing power which explains why so many people travel vast distances to touch the edifice and pay homage to it.
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