Millions are expected to flock to Manila this Tuesday, January 9, as the nation celebrates the annual Feast of the Black Nazarene. The theme for this year’s “traslacion” is “Poong Nazareno: Ang Daan, Ang Katotohanan, At Ang Buhay” (The Black Nazarene: The Way, The Truth, and the Life”) which is derived from John 14:6.
In connection to that, Manila Mayor Joseph Estrada has declared the suspension of classes in all colleges and universities, both public and private, throughout the city for January 9. He likewise ordered the suspension of work in all government offices for the said date, except for those involved in the maintenance of peace and order, traffic enforcement, disaster and risk reduction management, as well as health and sanitation.
Keep in mind that certain school may declare class suspensions for January 8 as well.
As in previous years, the Black Nazarene will be taken to the Quirino Grandstand by late afternoon of January 8 to begin the pahalik for devotees who wish to venerate the blessed icon. It will then be brought back to the Quiapo Church through a procession called “traslacion,” which usually lasts until the early morning of January 10.
The Feast of the Black Nazarene is one of the major festivities organized by the Philippine Catholic Church annually. Clad in maroon or purple shirts and often barefoot, millions of Black Nazarene devotees from all over the Philippines take part in the “traslacion” for a chance to touch the holy icon.