Archdiocese of CDO holds motorcade for Black Nazarene to pray for protection vs COVID-19
CAGAYAN DE ORO—The image of the Black Nazarene was brought out from its parish church on the evening of Good Friday, April 10, 2020, as the Archdiocese seeks its protection against the deadly coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19).
The small truck that carried the life-size image of the Black Nazarene and the small convoy of vehicles that accompanied it traveled empty streets and thoroughfares during the curfew hours.
The city government, cautious that it will not draw flak for allowing the motorcade, did not make public the route of the motorcade.
Police also drove away many devotees who tried to light candles along the thoroughfares threatening them with arrests for curfew violations.
A few who defied the police waited for hours only to find out that the motorcade did not pass their way.
The city government has been careful with the Black Nazarene motorcade after it arrested a pastor and dispersed a religious gathering of 500 people for violation of social distancing.
“We do not want to be accused of favoring the Archdiocese. So we have given orders that people should not be allowed to gather,” said a city official who asked not to be identified.
The Black Nazarene is the most revered religious icon in Cagayan de Oro drawing thousands of devotees on its feast day every January.
Fr. Der John Faborada, head of the Cagayan de Oro Archdiocese Social Action Center, said they have complied with the city government’s crowd and social distancing regulations.
Faborada said the archdiocese has closed the doors in all of its churches and has toned down all religious rites during the Holy Week celebration.
“We brought out the image of the Black Nazarene to seek its divine intercession to protect our residents from COVID-19,” Faborada said.
He said the Archdiocese had asked parishioners to refrain from doing their usual Holy Week pilgrimages like the Stations of the Cross in Barangay Malasag and church visitations.
“We are complying with the city government to ensure people will stay home during the Holy week,” Faborada said
The motorcade of the Black Nazarene was the only religious event allowed by the city government for the Holy Week. / dcb
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