Saturday, May 17

A visit in Quezon on a Holy Week

Did you ever experience the Holy Week traditions in the Philippines?
Did you hear about the "penitensya" (penitence/penance) where one do self-flagellation and at times even have themselves nailed to crosses as expression of penance or thanksgiving for a granted prayer?

I grew up as a Born Again Christian, we don't have such traditions, 
so I never saw anything like that until now.

My husband's grandparents live in Quezon province where the Catholic community practice such. I went there this year (April 2014) with my husband and mom-in-law and witnessed it for the first time (but not the crucifixion).

We went there on a Thursday after picking up his mom in the airport.
After an 8-hour drive, we got there at 11:00pm already.

 Friday morning, we watched the solemn street procession and the devotees.

re-enactment of the disciples

The Virgin Mary is veiled in black to express her bereavement

devotees self-flagellate as their vow. I chose not to show their faces (as respect) and their bruises on their back for some readers and the devotees consider this tradition as sacred

During this time, you can't have fun on a Friday, you should be on a somber mood as they commemorate Christ's death. 
As respect, we follow because my husband's grandparents are Catholic too.
Also, part of the tradition is not to eat pork. So, our meal until Friday are either seafood or veggies. ♥

This is a temporary escape from a stressful work. Being with your family in a relaxing and comforting place is a treasure.

How did you spend your Holy Week in your country? Do you have tradition like ours?
Share us your thoughts! Hugs ♥ ♥ ♥