Holy Week in Bantayan is about solemnity, faith – not fiesta

By: Morexette Marie B. Erram - Multimedia Reporter - CDN Digital | April 06,2023 - 07:10 PM

The carrozas are ready for the start of the solemn procession in Bantayan Island this Holy Thursday. | Morexette Marie Erram

The carrozas are ready for the start of the solemn procession in Bantayan Island this Holy Thursday. | Morexette Marie Erram

CEBU CITY, Philippines — With COVID-19 restrictions virtually gone, celebration of the Holy Week in Bantayan, Cebu have returned to normal. 

However, its local government as well as parishioners and organizers of its Lenten activities have some reminders for both tourists and devotees. And that is Holy Week in their locality have been and will always remain a solemn celebration.

“I invite everyone to come and see the church, the faithful in there who are actually centering their faith to who we are celebrating (and that is) Christ,” said Kenneth Roger Monilar, curator and chairperson on worship of the Parroquia de San Pedro Apostol, or commonly referred to as the Bantayan Parish Church. 

In a sit-down interview with CDN Digital, Monilar also urged visitors to join their liturgical activities if they would want to explore and learn more about Bantayan’s rich culture and history. 

“If you want to experience the reality of Bantayan, and see it’s not the fiesta here, that it is a solemn celebration, I advise everyone to join the liturgical activities,” he added.


Holy Week solemnity

On Maundy Thursday, April 6, the local government of Bantayan has published a statement telling the public to observe solemnity during Holy Week.

Monilar shared the same sentiment with the government, adding that Maundy Thursday and Good Friday were about remembering the death of Jesus Christ.

The curator debunked the belief that residents in Bantayan could eat pork during Holy Week, leading to assumptions that households hold ‘fiesta’ with lechon. 

READ: Faithful told to use the Holy Week as an opportunity to venerate, repent

Monilar pointed out that the indult the Roman Catholic Church that exempted Bantayan from fasting and abstaining from pork had long since expired.

“Now, we encourage Catholics like us to do fasting and abstain from eating pork,” he said. 

READ: Spend Holy Week in churches, not on beaches – bishop

READ: LOOK: Santa Fe officials start preparations for Holy Week 2023

Bantayan Island, composed of the towns of Santa Fe, Bantayan and Madridejos, is a popular destination for devotees and tourists during the Holy Week. 

While tourists splash on the beaches of Santa Fe, devotees proceed to the neighboring town of Bantayan to join Lenten activities. 

Bantayan revived its Holy Week events in 2022, including the famous Santo Entierro procession.


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TAGS: Bantayan, Cebu Daily News, cebu news, culture, fiesta, history, Holy Week, Maundy Thursday

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