Following the cancellation of the annual Black Nazarene procession this year, Quiapo Church has also called off the traditional kissing of the revered image due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Instead of the “pahalik“, which is usually held at the Quirino Grandstand a day before the procession of the Black Nazarene to the Quiapo Church, church rector Msgr. Hernando Coronel said they would replace it with “pagtanaw,” or viewing of the statue from the church’s balcony. (Read: Quiapo Church Rolls Out Mobile App as Pandemic Continues)
“The pilgrim image of the Nazarene will be brought up to the balcony of the church fronting Plaza Miranda two weeks before the actual Feast Day,” Msgr. Coronel said. “It will be on display for two weeks so people will have more time to venerate.”
Ang PAGTANAW sa Poong Hesus Nazareno ay Isang alternatibong paraan ng PAHALIK na ating nakasanayan.— Quiapo Church (@quiapochurch) September 4, 2020
Ito ay kung saan maari nating masilayan ang Señor ng malapitan at maidaing ang lahat ng ating mga panalangin. pic.twitter.com/dBZROBh5Ds
First in 200 Years
This will be the first time there will be no “traslacion” in over 200 years, but Msgr. Coronel said some adjustments have to be made as safety precautions against the coronavirus.
Manila City has earlier announced the cancellation of the procession on January 9 next year. The event is usually attended by millions of devotees as the miraculous Black Nazarene is said to grant prayers and wishes if you manage to hold the “andas. (Read: Four sacramentals that are known to be miraculous in the Philippines)
The traslacion and pahalik are two major events of the Catholic Church in the Philippines.