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Itim Na Nazareno Devotees Increasing

Itim Na Nazareno Devotees Increasing

Devotion to the Black Nazarene is growing more than ever not just among the people in Metro Manila but also across the country, a Catholic priest said.

Msgr. Clemente Ignacio, rector of Quiapo Church, said more dioceses have been requesting for their own pilgrim image of the mulatto Christ to be paraded in provinces.

Quiapo Church is home to Black Nazarene, a much venerated statue of Jesus Christ which many people believe has miraculous attributes.

From one pilgrim image before, we now have three and will soon turn four. The Black Nazarene have been requested by many parishes to grace them with a visit of the pilgrimage image,” Ignacio said.

Many parishes are requesting for the visit of the image because devotees are growing all over the Philippines, said Ignacio.

The rector said Quiapo Church has already donated life-size images of the Black Nazarene to the Archdiocese of Cagayan de Oro, the Diocese of Iligan, and the Diocese of Ipil— all in Mindanao.

In Visayas, he added, there are also requests for a pilgrimage image in Samar Island.

They are being [requested] by the bishops because they see the importance of this devotion in the country,” he said.

Asked why he thinks Black Nazarene devotees continue to grow, he said: "The Filipinos see themselves in the image of the suffering and struggling Black Nazarene.”

If you will notice the Black Nazarene is a snapshot of Jesus rising again after the fall... we will see there the resilience of the Filipinos, they never lose hope,” said Ignacio.

On January 9, around eight million devotees are expected to join the yearly procession of the Black Nazarene in Manila.

The priest also said that four or five million Filipinos will also celebrate the Feast of the Black Nazarene in Samar, Bicol and Cebu.

Authorities said around 1,000 police will be deployed in Manila to ensure peace and order throughout the celebration.

In Cagayan de Oro, around 1 million devotees are also expected to join the procession.

- Source