Santo Niño icon used for making money: neighbor

A RESIDENT of Barangay Bitoon, Dumanjug claimed that a woman who owns the “Dancing Santo Niño” is using the image of the Child Jesus to make money.

But Lolita Garol, owner of the image, denied that she was using it for her personal gain.

Nelia Palen, Garol’s neighbor in Barangay Bitoon, said that since the image reportedly moved and danced, people have been flocking to their village. But it has also created a problem in their village.

Palen said they never meddled in Garol’s affairs. But everything changed when an unidentified woman from Barangay Patupat in Barili sought the help of Palen’s husband at 11 p.m. of April 23.

Juana (not her real name)came to Bitoon after her daughter visited Garol’s house to check on the dancing image.

Nelia said that her husband Max was then busy looking for their youngest son who reportedly didn’t return home for hours.

Children

Max, also a councilor in their village, immediately went to the Garols. Nelia said Max tried calling Garol several times, but there was no response.

When Max peeked on one of the windows, he found not only the Juana’s daughter but also his son and two other teenagers.

They were praying with Garol’s family and were reportedly instructed to not respond to any calls so they can focus on their devotion to the Child Jesus.

Max got angry and ordered his son to come out. The three other kids were also forced to leave the house after Max insisted.

Juana noticed that the ring her daughter was wearing was already gone.

Nelia alleged that the ring was being kept inside Garol’s house.

Chased

Sun.Star Cebu visited Garol’s house last Friday but no one was around.

The news team eventually traced Garol and her family to the house of Roger Carcueva in Barangay Tangil, which is just a few meters away from Bitoon.

Garol, in a separate interview, denied receiving donations or stealing from those who seek the “dancing” image.

“The Señor Santo Niño does not allow us to receive donations. There were many people who wanted to give but we refused,” an emotional Garol told Sun.Star.

Garol said they vacated their house for the mean time because they have been chased by evil spirits.

She said that she is not forcing people to believe in the dancing Santo Niño, adding that it will be up to the faithful if they want to or not.

The Archdiocese of Cebu is conducting an inquiry on the “dancing” image and urged devotees to not declare this an instant miracle.
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