01/9/15

Nazareno Blues and Other News

Today, there are no classes and city government work in the City of Manila as it celebrates the Feast of the Black Nazarene, an event the Urban Roamer has written about in the past.

This year though has been an interesting one not much because of the event but due to the sidelights which have gotten a bit more attention. Continue reading

01/6/13

The home of Manila’s beloved Catholic icon

January 9 each year is a special day in this particular part of Manila, the city’s geographic center known as Quiapo. This is the Feast of the Black Nazarene, that darkened Catholic icon which represented Jesus Christ carrying the cross that is beloved by many Catholics, a majority of which belong curiously to the male gender.

On a sociological level, such a deep, fanatical as some might say, devotion of Catholic men to the “Nazareno” (as the Black Nazarene is called) can be considered a peculiarity at the very least as commonly in the realm of the Catholic faith, it is the women who exhibit such devotion. The Urban Roamer has always wondered why it is so, but that should be a question best left to sociologists, theologians, or others more well-versed in this topic to answer. Continue reading

01/9/10

Roaming at the Feast of the Black Nazarene

New Year’s celebrations aside, the first big feast/spectacle of the year this urban landscape looks forward to s the feast of the Black Nazarene held in the chaotic but colorful district of Quiapo right in the heart of the City of Manila. Without a doubt, it is Manila’s pride as far as festivities are concerned, in the same manner as Sinulog is to Cebu City and Kadayawan is to Davao City, to name a few.

What makes the feast of the Black Nazarene stand out from many other feasts in the country is that it is not the usual feast filled with dancers with colorful costumes and “Ati-Atihan” rip-offs. Rather, it proudly shows off a city’s “spiritual” side that’s unlike any other. While the “spirituality” of the feast itself is subject for debate, there’s no doubt that the devotion to the Black Nazarene is something that has already become embedded in the psyche and culture among many Filipinos, regardless of class and age. Continue reading