Black Nazarene of Quiapo visits Pililla parish for 11th time
The image of the Black Nazarene of Quiapo came to the St. Mary Magdalane Parish, Pililla, Rizal for its 11th annual visit. Traditionally, the image’s visit is made during the season of Lent. ANGELO TERNATE
PILILLA, Rizal – The renowned image of the Nuestro Padre Jesus Nazareno or the Black Nazarene of Quiapo visited the St. Mary Magdalene Parish in this town for the 11th time this Saturday, Feb. 17, with pilgrims from neighboring areas joining the celebration.
The Nazareno was brought to, Pililla on Saturday mid-morning from the municipal hall with a procession around the town center. Pililla’s image of St. Mary Magdalene (callejara) joined in the procession, leading the faithful to the parish church.
In his homily during the image’s arrival Mass, Fr. Alfredo E. Meneses, Jr., parish priest reflected on how the Nazareno has become “a sign of faith” for the people of Pililla.
He stressed during the many years the image has visited the parish, so many people came to simply pray and touch the hem of the image’s clothing as a way of entrusting their problems to the “Suffering Christ.”
According to him, the image of Mahal na Poong Nazareno shows the faithful three things: “first, as Jesus has painstakingly held on to the cross, we are also called on to trust Jesus and hold on to Him; second, despite our sufferings, it is Jesus who bears us and our failings and so we strive to imitate Him in being generous to others; and third, the sufferings Jesus bears simply show us that He is one with us in our journey towards becoming holy people.”
Activities that followed the visit included catechetical lectures, a serenade, testimonies of devotion, and cultural presentations. One of the highlights of the event was the thanksgiving Mass at the Stairs of Faith Monument in the parish patio attended by hundreds of devotees from Pililla and nearby towns.
According to this year’s oversight committee chairman, Councilor Dindo M. Abueg, the annual visits of the image of the Black Nazarene to St. Mary Magdalene Parish began in 2008 during the tenure of Fr. Reynante U. Tolentino.
He explained: “Through the visit, we aim to promote the devotion and strengthen the Christian faith of each individual here in Pililla.” This was affirmed by Quiapo Church’s Fr. Douglas Badong during his Mass on Sunday morning at the church saying, “The visits of the Nazareno show us that Jesus wills to be with His people. That is why you may flock to Quiapo, but today Quiapo comes here. It is Jesus coming here to be with you.”
The three-day visit is scheduled annually in the parish usually between February to March in observance of the Lenten season. CBCPNews