Sto. Niño umbrellas-A A +A
Saturday, January 19, 2013
THEY were more than umbrellas. They became vessels for Sto. Niño devotees to witness the colorful symbolism of the occasion and to become one in sharing in the protection from nature’s elements.
This was what the maroon and gold colored umbrellas at the Basilica del Sto. Niño meant to those who participated in the nine-day novena masses at the pilgrim center.
The umbrellas became one of the improvements this Sinulog celebration and the hundreds or thousands who attended the daily masses welcomed this addition.
Devotees were wonderfully surprised to find the colored umbrellas in the first dawn mass following the Penitential Walk with Jesus procession last Jan. 10. The umbrellas became useful when the rain started during the mass. The first photos out of the opening mass showed the maroon and gold colored (or is it red and yellow?) umbrellas blanketing the span of the pilgrim center.
The colors added to the festivity, together with the buntings and flags bearing the same colors that covered the area. Whoever thought of this should be applauded for turning a simple idea into one that adds meaning to the celebration. Maroon and gold represent the colors of the baby Jesus and symbolize love and peace.
The umbrellas also became a way for Cebuanos to unite, be like brothers and sisters who shared umbrellas with neighbors in the mass, and become responsible enough to return them for others to use in the next masses.
The Basilica del Sto. Niño prepared 3,000 umbrellas for people attending the novena masses. Reports said this was the idea of Fr. Jonas Mejares, OSA, the new rector and overall chairman of the Sinulog activities of the church. Every mass, when devotees used the umbrellas, the priest reminded them to return these to designated boxes in corners of the pilgrim center or at the exits. In the first days of the novena masses, guards who stood by the exits also collected them.
The umbrellas had a simple mark that said, “BSN Property.”
You don’t have to be on the streets braving the heat or seeking cover from the rain.
To enjoy the Sinulog from your homes or offices, go to www.sunstar.com.ph for the live coverage of today’s Sinulog 2013 grand parade.
The Sun.Star website has been covering Sinulog events live over the Internet for devotees here and outside of Cebu. Highlight of the coverage is the grand parade today that will be aired from at least three live points-–the grandstand at the Cebu City Sports Center, in front of the University of San Carlos along P. del Rosario St., and by the Metrobank building in Fuente Osmeña. In addition, roving teams will be going around the parade route to take photos and videos.
The live streaming will be accompanied by a live blog for updates in text. The coverage was made possible with the support of the Sinulog Foundation Inc., Needs and Solutions, Smart Communications, the Basilica del Sto. Niño and Metrobank.
When you see a Sun.Star camera, say “Hi!”
Published in the Sun.Star Cebu newspaper on January 20, 2013.