DESPITE a longer route this year, the Traslacion that brought the images of the Sto. Niño and the Our Lady of Guadalupe from Cebu City to Mandaue City yesterday arrived without delay.
Organizers of this year’s Fiesta Señor noted that the motorcade arrived exactly at 9 a.m.
This year’s route is 10 kilometers long.
Fr. Ric Anthony Reyes, secretary of this year’s Fiesta Señor and media liaison officer for the Basilica del Sto. Niño, attributed the speedy arrival to the wide roads and to the cooperation of the devotees.
In his homily during the Traslacion mass, Fr. Manuel Tan urged the faithful to dedicate their lives to the Sto. Niño by helping the poor.
Tan, parish priest of the Archdiocesan Shrine of Our Lady of Guadalupe, told the faithful that one’s dedication to the Sto. Niño is not only equated through mere show of faith but also through deeds.
“Let us remember that the Sto. Niño identified himself with the poor, the lost, the last and the least. While in unison, we praised the Sto. Niño through raising our hands or through our mouth, the question is do we use the same hands and mouth to do bad deeds to others?” Tan said.
When the motorcade arrived in the border between Cebu City and Mandaue City, Mayor Tomas Osmeña turned over the images to Mayor Luigi Quisumbing and Vice Mayor Carlo Fortuna.
Over 8,000 devotees lined the streets and gathered at the National Shrine of St. Joseph (NSSJ) to await the arrival of the images.
Supt. Jimmy Aguisanda, deputy director for operations of the Mandaue City Police Office, said the trip from A.S. Fortuna to the NSSJ “was generally peaceful.”
Residents, workers students and devotees waved their little flags, offered flowers and danced the Sinulog steps when the religious icons passed their area.
Around 370 police personnel, barangay tanods and force multipliers were deployed to secure the Traslacion route, NSSJ grounds and the motorcade to Lapu-Lapu City for the seaborne procession today.
After the Sto. Niño and Our Lady of Guadalupe arrived at the NSSJ around 9 a.m., a concelebrated mass led by Msgr. Daniel Sanico was held.
Quisumbing had suspended classes in pre-school, elementary and high school due to the rain and heavy traffic related to the Sinulog activities.
Before the Traslacion, more than 90,000 devotees joined the Walk With Mary procession, which brought the image of the Our Lady of Guadalupe from Guadalupe to the basilica.
Acting Cebu City Police Office Director Senior Supt. Julian Entoma said the procession started around 2 a.m.
“It was successful, peaceful and there were no untoward incidents that was monitored. Our personnel were aggressive in keeping out motorists who tried to join in the procession,” Entoma said. “It was overall, a success on the security and we hoped that this will be the same for the other religious activities this week.”
Published in the SunStar Cebu newspaper on January 20, 2018.
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