TO have a comprehensive account on the evolution of the Cebuano’s devotion to the Santo Niño and to establish the roots of Cebuano society, Dr. Resil B. Mojares launched his book entitled, The Feast of the Santo Niño: An Introduction to the History of a Cebuano Devotion on January 20 at the Aula Magna of Basilica Minore del Santo Niño.
Mojares, University of San Carlos’ lone Emeritus Professor and founding director of USC Cebuano Studies Center, said that although tourists come to Cebu yearly for the Sinulog festival, there are no published accounts aside from touristic and religious promotional materials that could explain Cebuano’s deep devotion for the child Jesus.
“My primary motivation in writing this book is, mainly because for every year we have a million of visitors coming to Cebu for the Fiesta of Sto. Nino and the Sinulog Festival and yet we don’t really have a book a visitor can pick up (that) we could present him with a concise history of the devotion of the image of the Sto. Nino, so the significance of the event is not fully appreciated.” he said.
The 140-page soft-cover book contains a detailed account on the Cebuano’s love for the miraculous image from its finding until the present grand fesivity.
This book was said to be unlike most of the usual religious narrative of the Santo Niño. It does not only fill important gaps in history, it also locates the story of the evolution of the Cebuano society as written in the book’s synopsis.
With about 2,000 copies initially printed, approximately 1,000 copies were already sold.
“This is not a story that can be told once and for all so I’m hoping and expecting that there will be subsequent editions of the book. But we think this is already a good start.” he added.
The Feast of the Santo Niño: An Introduction to the History of a Cebuano Devotion is available at the Basilica gift shop at only P350. /Shella Mae B. Marinduque