Filipinos are people who value faith and devotion like no other.
It is finally the Lenten season, and people, especially devotees, are observing a time of reverence and sacrifice. Lenten Season is celebrated differently worldwide; even the Philippines has its own way of celebrating.
Let’s talk about the various activities that Filipinos observe during Lent.
1. Daan ng Krus
Daan ng Krus, or the “Way of the Cross,” is done every Good Friday and all Fridays of Lent. The Way of the cross highlights the passion, death, and resurrection of Jesus.
2. Viernes Dolores
Viernes Dolores is one of the oldest devotions to the Mater Dolorosa. On the Sixth Friday of Lent, women wearing black dresses and veils pray the rosary. They also recite verses of the Novena to Our Lady of Sorrows.
In other places in the Philippines, Viernes Dolores is celebrated with a procession of Mary. The image of Mary contains a heart pierced with seven swords. Moreover, the seven swords depict Mary’s seven sorrows.
The Senakulo is a street play about the Passion of Christ. The event usually takes place in Bulacan, Rizal, and Pampanga. Senakulo depicts the violence Jesus experienced from his persecutors.
4. Linggo ng Palaspas
If you are Catholic, you might have palaspas in your house. The palaspas, or woven coconut leaves, signify the palm and olive branches waved when Jesus arrived at Jerusalem.
During Lenten Season, different processions take place. These processions are often done during Holy Week. During Holy Monday and Holy Tuesday, the procession of the Way to Calvary is done.
During the Way to Calvary, the image of the Fallen Chris is accompanied by the saints who were there when Jesus walked to his death.
6. Visita Iglesia
Visita Iglesia is the act of visiting seven churches. During Visita Iglesia, the Way of the Cross is prayed on Maundy Thursday or Good Friday. It is known as one of the most common way to remember the Passion of Christ.
Penitencia is a penance where participants beat their bodies through lashing and self-inflicted flagellation. The participants are bare up to the waist. Their faces are covered with hoods, and they wear crowns made of leaves.
The penitents start praying at a cemetery and initially wound themselves.
The Paglilibing is one of the longest processions during Holy Week. During this time, an image of the Dead Christ is situated in a casket. The Paglilibing is observed on Good Friday after the Lord’s Passion and Veneration of the Cross.
9. Abstinence and Fasting
Another way to celebrate Lent is Abstinence and Fasting. Fasting is when individuals eat one complete meal and two smaller meals. People exempted from fasting are those who are sick, pregnant, and those who work extensively.
On the other hand, abstinence is the act of “doing without.” For example, observing abstinence means abstaining from eating meat on Ash Wednesday and all Fridays of Lent.
These are only some of the things that Filipinos observe during the Lenten Season. In addition, of course, each part of the Philippines may have its unique way of celebrating. But, despite the differences, Catholics still have one goal, which is to remember the sacrifices of Christ.