Zambo City sets indoor, online Holy Week observance

Zambo City sets indoor, online Holy Week observance

ZAMBOANGA CITY–All religious activities during the observance of the Holy Week will be held indoors and will be broadcast online amid the health pandemic.

This is based on the agreement reached by the local Inter-Agency Task Force (IATF) on coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19) and the Archdiocese of Zamboanga.

Fr. Marciano Villagracia, Archdiocese of Zamboanga spokesman, said Tuesday the religious activities will kick-off with the blessing of the palm fronds on Palm Sunday, March 28.

Villagracia said it will be followed by the celebration of the Lord’s last supper at 6 p.m. on Holy Thursday (April 1) and washing of the feet. At 8 p.m., all churches will be closed to the public.

There will be no public Station of the Cross, while the Seven Last Words and mass will be held online on Good Friday. There will also be no Holy Burial, locally known as “Santo Intierro,” he said.

Mayor Maria Isabelle Climaco-Salazar said Tuesday the Station of the Cross at the Cesar Climaco Freedom Park in Mount Abong-Abong will be closed to the public during the Holy Week.

Mount Abong-Abong serves as a pilgrim site for thousands of Catholic devotees during the observance of the Holy Week. They usually stay overnight on Holy Thursday and return home after the Seven Last Words and mass on Good Friday.

Villagracia said they have also canceled the blessing of the fire at 6 p.m. on Black Saturday, and the Easter vigil will be held inside the Church.

Villagracia said that there will be masses on Easter Sunday but no traditional “salubong (meeting),” a ritual that reenacts the meeting of Jesus Christ and His Mother, Mary, after His resurrection.

“We have decided to hold all religious activities indoors to be able to control the crowd of worshipers amid the pandemic,” he said. (PNA)

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