Be reverent to fellowmen, Tagle tells Black Nazarene devotees

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Saturday, January 4, 2014


MANILA Archbishop Luis Antonio Cardinal Tagle on Saturday urged devotees of the Black Nazarene to follow Jesus Christ by being good and reverent to their fellowmen.

He noted that by being respectful and helpful to others one should not steal, taking advantage of those who are weak, should not be corrupt, and not thinking of ill against other people.

"If we learn how to care for other individuals like what Jesus did, we will not cheat, we will not be corrupt, we will not take advantage of other people. Jesus Christ showed us that looking after the welfare of other people will result to more blessings," said the head of the Archdiocese of Manila in an interview over Church-run Radyo Veritas.

He is also hoping that those who will celebrate of the feast of the Black Nazarene on January 9 will intensify their devotion to God.

At the same time, Tagle is praying that the celebration or the traslacion will be peaceful.

Some 12 million devotees are expected to join the traslacion, the procession where the Black Nazarene's image will be returned to Quiapo Church from the Quirino Grandstand at the Rizal Park.

Security

Security measures have been in place to ensure peaceful and orderly celebration of the feast next week, deputy presidential spokesperson Abigail Valte said Saturday.

Valte said police are working with the Manila City Government to ensure the safety of devotees and peace and order during the feastday.

"As in all years, buo ang suporta natin for the security ng mga deboto for the January 9 Feast of the Black Nazarene," she said in an interview over dzRB Radyo ng Bayan.

Since Wednesday, devotees of the Black Nazarene had been trooping to Quiapo to take part in activities honoring their patron.

Valte said that while the Manila City Government has allowed its disaster risk reduction council to handle the arrangements for the event, the police will assist in enforcing the safety measures.

National Capital Region Police Office (NCRPO) Chief Carmelo Valmoria said that they have already prepared "security procedure" for the religious event, as the traslacion can last up to 24 hours.

In the previous feasts, the carriage used to transport the Black Nazarene image sustained damaged while in the middle of the procession due to number of devotees who jumped towards it just to touch or take a close glimpse of the miraculous religious image.

Valmoria refused to disclose the number of police personnel that will be deployed on January 9 as part of their standard operating procedure.

He also didn’t give any further details the locations where the augmentation forces will be positioned.

Last year, some 3,000 augmentation forces from the NCRPO were deployed in Manila to provide security to millions of devotees that will flock along the streets of Luneta Park and Quiapo Church.

The Manila Police District (MPD) and Metro Manila Development Authority (MMDA) will each deploy some 1,000 uniformed personnel to help maintain the peace and order during the event, which is branded as the world's largest Roman Catholic feast.

Procession route

Event organizers led by the Minor Basilica of the Black Nazarene's Fiesta Committee noted that no changes will be applied and procession will take its usual route after the solemn high mass that will be led by Cardinal Tagle around 7 a.m. of Thursday at the Quirino Grandstand.

After the mass, the procession will start from the Quirino Grandstand, then left to Katigbak Drive through Padre Burgos Street, left Taft Avenue through McArthur Bridge, right Palanca Street through under Quezon Bridge, left to Quezon Boulevard, then it will pass through the narrow streets of Quiapo starting turning right to Arlegui Street, right Fraternal Street, right Vergara Street, left Duque de Alba Street, left Castillejos Street, left Farnecio Sreet, right Arlegui Street;

Left Nepomuceno, then it was pass through the streets of Castillejos, Farnesio, backto Arlegui then Nepomuceno, Aguila, Carcer, Hildalgo, Plaza del Carmen, Bilibid Viejo, Guzman, Barbosa, Globo de Oro, Palanca and finally in front of the basilica’s gate in Plaza Miranda.

The Department of Public and Highways (DPWH) said that only one lane of the McArthur Bridge will be allowed to use during the procession since it can only accommodate up to 400 persons while the opposite lanes is only open to light vehicles.

DPWH undersecretary for operations Romeo Momo said that the devotees are not allowed to stay on top of the bridge and the flow of the procession should be continuous until all Black Nazarene followers have turned right to Palanca Street.

"Dapat moving ang tao, di pwede stand by sa tulay and meron talaga marshal na mag control. Last year meron kami talaga na 50 to 100 personnel diyan na nag-aalalay sa mga police at LGU. Para tuloy-tuloy ang lakad ng tao, ang atin dapat may crowd control behaviour. Dapat kalahati lang, dapat moving. Dapat tuloy-tuloy lang,” Momo said.

Meanwhile, Manila Mayor Joseph Estrada has issued Executive Order 41, suspending classes in all level on Thursday in anticipation of a mammoth crowd of pilgrims during the Black Nazarene's traslacion.

This year's theme is, "Debotong Layko ng Poong Hesus Nazareno: Tapat na Katiwalang Nagdarsal, Sumusunod at Sumasaksi." (With FP/SDR/Sunnex)

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