Happy Easter!

I must say that I have a well-spent Lenten Season and even though I spent it here in Manila - in our home, with my family and not in some tourist-crowded place like the beach - I'd say that I enjoyed it and as well as learned a lot from it.

To some Lent is a season to breakout from the toxicity of their jobs, well, that's just the same with me. But in my case Lent is also a season to bond with my family and with our God. And this Easter Sunday, despite of almost 28 years of existence here in the world - precisely here in Tondo, Manila - I had my first experience of witnessing the "Salubong" the Tondo way.

For those who are clueless, "Salubong" is procession held at the dawn of Easter Sunday, which is believed that on the third day of the death of Jesus Christ, Mary saw an angel and told her that Christ has risen. On this "Salubong" two processions were held, one for Mary and one for the resurrected Christ. The two processions will meet at the gate of the church where the crowd of people are waiting eagerly. It is said that "Salubong" marks the beginning of Easter celebration.

So, early today, I was in Sto. Nino de Tondo Parish with my aunts to witness the "Salubong" which was attended by almost a thousand parishioners of Tondo.

I was up by 3 in the morning and I was in Tondo Parish at exactly 4:30 in the morning. I was surprised to see with my two eyes that it was indeed one of the attended "Salubongs" in town. By 4:30 a.m., I think, roughly 400 to 500 parishioners were already there, excited to see the replicas of Mary and Jesus to meet.

Mary's procession was composed of 4 other replicas of Mary while Jesus' procession was only composed of 2 replicas. And after some grueling time, asking the people to give way to Mary's carriage so that they can place her under this tent, Jesus came in next fronting Mary her mother.

A little girl dressed in angel's costumes was slightly slid downward from the top of the tent, throwing confetti to the replica to usher her. Then, after more confetti, a dove flew on top of Mary's head, took the black veil then fireworks and applause filled the surroundings. It is a tradition here in Tondo Parish that a dove must took the black veil from Mary's head because it symbolizes pure blessing from the Creator.

After that, a mass was held welcoming everyone to the start of Easter.

After the mass, the flowers from the carriages, which were believed to have some kind of healing powers were thrown to the parishioners making the whole crowd go crazy. Lucky me, just before the whole nine yards sway from left to right, I was already at the steps of the church near the altar with my aunts to receive the final blessing from the new parish priest of Sto. Nino de Tondo Parish.

It was one experience that I would never forget this year, really. I didn't expect that seeing this event would be this crazy, thank God I manage to out-stand all the challenges this Easter Sunday morning. Hehehe.

And of course, to celebrate this Easter Sunday my way, I have the meaty Jollibee Spaghetti on my breakfast table! Wee!

Happy Easter, everyone! Stay beautiful and blessed! Muah!


elmerlovesoreo said...

Lovely pictures. You're such a talented photographer. BTW, what brand and model of camera are you using? I'm planning to purchase a new one soon.

Alex De Vera Dizon said...

Aw... Thanks po. Nakakatouch. ^_^

I used a Canon 500D for the pictures above.

edelweiza said...

same here, spent the HOly Week in our Cavite home with my entire family.nothing beats it for me.we had so much fun, just making kulitan with each other, watching DVDs, sleep, and eat, eat, eat. :)

Alex De Vera Dizon said...

Happy Easter, Edel!

Yeah, I gained weight too! Hahaha! family bonding is the best! ^_^