Manila all set for bigger Black Nazarene feast

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Manila all set for bigger Black Nazarene feast

The Manila Police District (MPD) will implement a 48-hour gun ban in the city in line with the feast of the Black Nazarene next week.

Manila Mayor Joseph Estrada suspended classes and city government work for Tuesday, January 9, when devotees will mark the Feast of the Black Nazarene.

"Enduring a challenging procession where devotees walk barefoot is also seen as a test of faith for some".

The procession, a 221-year tradition, had over 1.1 million devotees attending, according to the latest report of the National Capital Region Police Office.

"The procession will not pass through Lagusnilad overpass to ensure the safety of the devotees", Coronel said.

Arrojado said they have not monitored any terror threat related to the feast.

Millions of Catholic devotees are expected to join the procession.

Thousands of policemen and soldiers were deployed to ensure security.

"Filipinos who come to Quiapo... get a sense of being near the Lord, of the Lord touching them and of the Lord accompanying them... through hard challenges", Quiapo church parochial vicar Father Marvin Cruz told AFP. It will cover a 500-metre radius from the procession route, the Quirino Grandstand and Quiapo Church.

Traslacion is the commemoration of the transfer of the image of the Black Nazarene from its original home in Intramuros to the Minor Basilica of the Black Nazarene Church in Quiapo on January 9.

There would be slight changes in the procession route to speed up the traslacion.

Msgr. Hernando Coronel of the Minor Basilica of the Black Nazarene discusses the route of the Traslacion at a news briefing.

The theme of this year's event is based on a Bible verse from the book of Corinthians: "Pag-ibig ang buklod ng ganap na pagkakaisa (Love binds us in the fullness of unity)".

Explaining the strong Filipino devotion, Monsignor Sabino Vengco, a prominent Catholic priest, told CNN Philippines: "People will suffer sickness, old age.so pain and suffering will always be there", he said.

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