[Vigan] ► The Holy Mass for Sto Cristo Milagroso de Vigan

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"This time, it's a team. The image of Sto Cristo Milagroso de Vigan was placed behind the middle of a temporary altar that was especially set up for today's use. The altar was on a platform accentuated by ornamental plants."

Tres de Mayo is an iconic day in Vigan. It's actually a religious fiesta that's celebrated by the Bigueños every 3rd day of May. In 1882, a deadly cholera epidemic engulfed the residents of Vigan. Bigueños believe that the epidemic ceased through the intercession of Apo Lakay (the Miraculous Santo Cristo de Vigan). Since then, the people of Vigan celebrated the Tres de Mayo to honor Apo Lakay. 'Lakay' in Ilocano means old man or male elder. The word 'apo' is usually said before a certain noun to show respect. However, in the context of Bigueño culture's Tres de Mayo, Apo Lakay refers to the Santo Cristo Milagroso.

[VIGAN] ► HELLO! WELCOME TO VIGAN!


#VIGAN


The Miraculous Santo Cristo de Vigan is enshrined in Simbaan a Bassit. The fiesta starts with a holy mass in front of Simbaan a Bassit in honor of Apo Lakay.

To witness this event, I woke up early. Seriously, I didn't take a bath. Worse, I didn't even wash my mouth or wash my face. I was rushing.

I knew I am already late and I would not want to miss this opportunity again. I've been wanting to witness the Tres de Mayo mass every year but I've never done it.

Actually, I want to take photos of the holy mass happening before sunrise so I really have to be there very early.

VIGAN TRES DE MAYO

[VIGAN] ► THE SCENE THAT WELCOMED ME: VIGAN'S MAIN ROAD IS CLOSED.

VIGAN TRES DE MAYO

[VIGAN] ► SCENE FROM THE WEST SIDE OF SIMBAAN-A-BASSIT

VIGAN TRES DE MAYO

[VIGAN] ► PRIESTS OFFICIATING THE HOLY MASS


The mass actually starts at 6 AM every year. The south end of Quezon Avenue was closed to traffic because traditionally, the mass happens in front of the church. The T-junction of Quezon Avenue and Liberation Boulevard served as the mass ground.

When I arrived on the mass ground, the mass has already started. I was 30 minutes late. The façade of the church (especially its espadaña) was the first one to catch my attention. The rising sun is hitting it. It had this beautiful glow that's hard to get unnoticed.

While the surrounding area is still dark, the top of the façade glows beautifully—basically due to the sunlight (sunrise). Unfortunately, I wasn't able to take a photo of that great short moment when the church is the only one being hit by the sunlight because the area was crowded and I was looking for a place where I can park. Sadly, the sun was already high when I found a parking space—the whole area was already bright. The sweet moment just passed so quickly.

It was an awkward moment when I have to bring out my camera and take photos while everyone is silently listening to the preaching of the priest. I tried to creep in the crowd until I reached a point where I'm now near the temporary altar especially made for this occasion.

VIGAN TRES DE MAYO

[VIGAN] ► THE IMAGE OF SANTO CRISTO MILAGROSO PERCHED BEHIND THE ALTAR

VIGAN TRES DE MAYO

[VIGAN] ► PILGRIMS AND DEVOTEES OF THE SANTO CRISTO MILAGROSO

VIGAN TRES DE MAYO

[VIGAN] ► CHAIRS WERE SET UP IN FRONT OF THE SIMBAAN-A-BASSIT

VIGAN TRES DE MAYO

[VIGAN] ► THE COMMUNION

VIGAN TRES DE MAYO

[VIGAN] ► THIS PRIEST DESCENDED FROM THE ALTAR FOR THE COMMUNION.


I believe this is an important moment for the Roman Catholics here in Vigan because there was a big set of priests on the altar all wearing a cream-white dress. From afar, it seemed like they were adorned with embossed golden prints.

Usually, whenever I see masses in Vigan, there's only one priest. This time, it's a team. The image of Sto Cristo Milagroso de Vigan was placed behind the middle of a temporary altar that was especially set up for today's use. The altar was on a platform accentuated by ornamental plants. Fruits were hanging from the ceiling covered by a deep green fern-like leaves.

After a couple of minutes, everyone said "peace" then they raised their hands and sang Ama Mi (Our Father). I left the crowd after the singing and went to the other side. Fruit vendors started to appear until my friend saw me. She approached me and she was talking to me but I felt more awkward now. I didn't want to talk. I didn't know how to react. I didn't want to open my mouth. I think you know the reason why. It was so awkward. I was talking with pursed lips, ridiculous.

VIGAN TRES DE MAYO

[VIGAN] ► A DEVOTEE RAISES HER HANDS AS SHE SINGS 'AMA MI'  ON TOP OF ISIDRO BUILDING.

VIGAN TRES DE MAYO

[VIGAN] ► THE CROWD WHILE SINGING 'AMA MI'


This mass is just the start of this fiesta and I have more to come. I'll write a separate post for each event so come back soon on this blog! I'll also write a comprehensive article about the Tres de Mayo fiesta in the future. This is just an introduction for now. | end |
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More posts related to Tres de Mayo ► [1]

[VIGAN] ► Ramada: Thanksgiving Culture and Traditional Games


TEASER ▬ The ramada traditional games happen every Tres de Mayo. Tres de Mayo is a feast day honoring Apo Lakay or the Sto Cristo Milagroso de Vigan who is believed to have saved Vigan from a plague in 1882.

| [2]

[VIGAN] ▬ The Lion Dance and the Culture on the 3rd of May


TEASER ▬ I thought I already know a lot about its history and culture but I realized that the more I discover new things, the more questions leave me hanging.



03 MAY 2016: HOLY MASS OF TRES DE MAYO
DEVOTEES AND PILGRIMS FLOCKED IN FRONT OF THE SIMBAAN A BASSIT FOR THE HOLY MASS OF TRES DE MAYO.

TRES DE MAYO VIGAN

[VIGAN] ► HELLO! WELCOME TO TRES DE MAYO DE VIGAN!


► FOOTNOTES, DISCLAIMERS, ACKNOWLEDGMENT, ETC

[1] This post is filed under the category "Customs and Traditions." This is a category here on my blog where I write my experiences, note down my insights and post photo essays about customs and traditions I've seen or experienced then I weave them into stories. There is a section below where you can see other related posts from this category.

[2] All maps I used on this post are the works of Eugene Alvin Villar and Mike Gonzalez published on Wikipedia. Source: 1 | 2


[3] All photos are mine.

[4] The insights, conditions and name of places or properties I mentioned here are based on the facts and situation on the day of my visit. Take note that you may have a different experience when you experience the Tres de Mayo in Vigan. Names of places and properties may also change by time.

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Map Showing the Location of #Vigan


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MORE POSTS FROM THIS CATEGORY: *CUSTOMS AND TRADITIONS*

[VIGAN] ► How Holy Week is Celebrated in Vigan? (What You Need to Know)

_________________
TEASER ▬ ...you can't take away the fact that Good Friday is Vigan's most crowded day and Vigan's religious culture is the phoenix. The minority creeps out in oblivion—its powerlessness revealed.

[VIGAN] ► Unveiling of Christmas Tree, an Annual Bigueño Tradition

_________________
TEASER ▬ Our Bigueño culture is so rich that it is not enough to express it in words—we need to express them in festivities and manifest it in our intangible good traditions for other people to understand.

[VIGAN] ► Procession: Observing the Semana Santa in Vigan

_________________
TEASER ▬ I hope everyone shall change for the better. It should not just be a tradition but it should be a goal to enrich our spiritual lives.

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TEASER ▬ This is Holy Week up north. This is Vigan, like any other places in the Philippines.

[VIGAN] ► Santa Cruzan in Vigan's Flores de Mayo

_________________
TEASER ▬ Bigueños love cultural events a lot because we also love our cultural heritage double fold.

[VIGAN] ► Ramada: Thanksgiving Culture and Traditional Games

_________________
TEASER ▬ The ramada traditional games happen every Tres de Mayo. Tres de Mayo is a feast day honoring Apo Lakay or the Sto Cristo Milagroso de Vigan who is believed to have saved Vigan from a plague in 1882.

[VIGAN] ► Rakit Race: Bamboos and Balance at Mestizo River

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TEASER ▬ The historic Mestizo river is the place to see. For the very first time, I witnessed an event called rakit race.

[VIGAN] ► [VIGAN] ▬ The Lion Dance and the Culture on the 3rd of May

_________________
TEASER ▬ I thought I already know a lot about its history and culture but I realized that the more I discover new things, the more questions leave me hanging.

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