A good news to residents and workers of the Manila as the city government has declared January 9 as a holiday. The news allegedly came from the city tourism office.
January 9 is a holiday in Manila in celebration of the Feast of the Black Nazarene.
The Feast of the Black Nazarene is one of the country’s biggest religious activities as Filipino Catholics flock to the metro to join an hours-long procession that is usually marred by injuries and deaths.
According to reports, because of the January 9 celebration, officials of the Minor Basilica of the Black Nazarene earlier said around 15 million to 18 million guests and devotees are expected to flock to Quiapo Church from December 31 to January 10, 2017.
Also, Chief Inspector John Guiagui of the Plaza Miranda Police Station said security preparations for the feast have been underway since November. Adding that around 1,000 policemen will be deployed in different areas and will be on full alert to check not only points of convergence but also inns and hotels near the procession route.
Based on reports, about 1.5 million people took part in the seven-kilometer (4.5-mile) parade, which runs from the park to the icon’s home inside the downtown Quiapo church, police officials said.
Allegedly, crowned with thorns and bearing a cross, the Nazarene statue was brought to Manila by Augustinian priests in 1607, early on in Spain’s 400-year colonial rule. Some also believed that is has been partially burnt and blackened when the galleon carrying it caught fire on a voyage from Mexico, another Spanish colony at the time. with Agence France Presse.