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Bb. Pilipinas Cebu Province bet’s Sto. Niño vestment as national costume draws mixed reactions; church responds

Bb. Pilipinas Cebu province’s Sto. Niño vestment as national costume draws mixed reactions; church responds

The controversial national costume of Bb. Pilipinas Cebu Province bet Joy Dacoron.    | Photo from Bb. Pilipinas / Facebook

CEBU CITY, Philippines – Debates on whether the Señor Sto. Niño should be made part of pageantry is now the hottest talk online.

Binibing Pilipinas on Tuesday, May 16 revealed the National Costume of all 40 candidates, two days before the Preliminary Costume Competition.

Among those that went viral was that of Bb. Pilipinas Cebu Province bet Joy Dacoron, who was dressed in the iconic red and gold vestment of the Holy Child.

“Her costume symbolizes unwavering faith and pays tribute to their province’s patron. The Señor Sto. Nino de Cebu is a source of inspiration and strength for numerous Catholic faithful. She is one of those,” the caption read.

“When she lost her father to an accident last year, she questioned God, “Ngano man, Lord? (Why, Lord?)” The Sto. Nino paved the way for her to shed off her doubts and made her realize that everything happens for a reason. In gratitude, she is sharing this faith on the national stage,” it added.


The image, however, has since been deleted from social media channels of Binibing Pilipinas after it drew mixed reactions from netizens.

While some praised its design, others found it offensive, saying that the Señor Sto. Niño should be treated with sacredness.

A few hours after the National Costume stills were published, Dacoron, in her official Instagram post, shared several behind-the-scene (BTS) stills of her National Costume photoshoot.

In her caption, she thanked church officials for allowing her to do a photoshoot within the Basilica Minore del Sto. Niño compound.

“Mapasalamaton sobra ilabi na kina Bishop Ruben Labajo Rev. Fr. Roland Angel Anthony Torres & kuya Melchor Aloro sa pag assist nako nga gisugtan ko mag shoot sa mga nindot na simbahan sa Cebu,” she said.



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A post shared by DacoroNation (@joydacoronbb34)

Church officials, for their part, clarified that while they permitted Joy and her team to hold a photoshoot within the Basilica grounds, they were unaware of the Sto. Niño’s vestment is to be used for Bb. Pilipinas’ National Costume.

“Ang pananghid ni Joy nga magpa kodak siya diin ang background mao ang mga simbahan dinhi sa Sugbo. Wala koy idea nga i-promote diay  ang vestment ni Sto. Niño as national costume, ug labaw nang wala kahibaw ang mga kapariang Agustino ana,” said Mons. Ruben Labajo, Auxiliary Bishop at the Archdiocese of Cebu, in a text message.

“Mao nga diha ra na siya sa gawas nagpa kodak, dili sulod sa Basilica… Pero si Joy lang ug ang iyang manager mao lang ang patubagon kon nganong kana gyud,” he added.

Fe Barino, the chairperson of the Commission on the Laity of the Archdiocese of Cebu also reminded the public to be careful in incorporating church-related themes in events.

“Ang “creativity” kinahanglan ubanan sab unta ug lamdag gikan sa Espiritu Santo aron mogawas ang tinood nga “beauty of God’s creation. Kinahanglan ang pag respeto sa kultura ug religion,” said Barino.

The Sto. Niño, which means Holy Child in Spanish, is the Roman Catholic title of the Child Jesus. It is associated with a religious image of the Christ Child.

The image of the Señor Sto. Niño de Cebu is one of the oldest religious relics in the Philippines and is believed to be the statue Ferdinand Magellan presented as a gift to Hara Humamay, who was christened as Reyna Juana.

Cebu celebrates Fiesta Señor, the feast of the Señor, every third Sunday of January. The popular Sinulog Festival is its secular counterpart.

While the Sto. Niño is considered an icon in Cebu, it is not the province island’s patron saint as the image is the representation of Jesus Christ as a child.


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TAGS: Bb. Pilipinas, beauty pageant, beauty queens, Cebu Daily News, cebu news, MUPH, Sto. Nino de Cebu
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