THE MASSIVE BLACK NAZARENE PROCESSION * The Dec 30 procession was the preview for the Jan. 9 main event

About 1,000 people were injured at more than half way to Quiapo church. People who fainted were floated on top of the dense violent crowd.
Devotees overwhelmed police forces near Palanca St. corner Ayala Ave. They complained that policemen should also be barefoot and not wear combat boots, wounding a lot of feet. MMDA barriers were thrown aside. Still, the police and military did a good job.
An old woman vendor wept to Mayor Isko when P10,000 worth of her goods were confiscated. Isko paid her P8,000 to compensate.
An estimated 70 tons of garbage were carried away by 40 trucks, when clean-up was not yet over.
Overall, the 2020 procession showed more resilience of Filipino devotees as other years. 
eastwind journals
By Bernie V. Lopez,
Blogger / retired Inquirer columnist / healing ministry
Facebook “Bernie Lopez” / “Eastwind Journals”
Share this article –
This years Black Nazarene procession was the most dramatic and resilient than previous ones.
In spite of reports of terrorist bomb threats, the previous Black Nazarene procession in January 2019 was the most massive in history. The longest was in 2012, 22 hours from dawn to dawn, 9 hours longer than the usual. All four wheels of the carroza (carriage) broke down one by one. Anticipating a more massive procession in January 9, 2020, a new security arrangement is being prepared.


Like an omen, the 2012 procession stopped for a long time right at the heart of the Quiapo Muslim enclave, reminding us of the bond between Muslims and Christians, especially after the devastation of Marawi. People slept on the pavement, waiting for the Image to pass their street. When the city government wanted to make a short cut due to the delay, residents came out in droves to protest. Security forces suppressed cellphone signal to and from the Quiapo area.


The Black Nazarene procession of 2019, broke all records, more massive, more violent, requiring more security more than ever (see photo). We expect the same to happen this year, 2020. Previously, women did not join the violent mob, but in 2019, they dared to stick together and assert themselves in a predominantly male crowd (see photo). Lord, we offer the Filipino people and the Filipino nation to you, our Messiah.




There are two messages in this historic affair, one from Filipino devotees, the other from the Nazarene. The message from the devotees is a simple prayer, “We will never abandon you, Lord. Even amid the greatest trials You send us, such as the 20-odd typhoons every year, we endure as long as you are beside us.” And the message from the Nazarene is just as simple, “I will never abandon you because you have not abandoned Me. I am the ocean, you are the rivers. Flow into me as I flow back into you, just like the rains that nourish your fields. I am the vine. You are the branches. Abide in me as I in you.”




Nowhere in the world can other Christian communities rival the Filipino Black Nazarene devotees, exemplified by the grass-roots mammoth crowd. Many say it is fanaticism, but theologians say it is the unique character of Filipino devotees, especially with regards the panata, the vow to attend the procession for the rest of one’s life, as atonement for one’s sins. There is no fanaticism in that, only pure prayer not in words but in action. The essence is the Black Nazarene devotion is a prayer for forgiveness of our sins, and homage to the Messiah through whom sins are forgiven.
Share this article –


eastwind posters
Photos from last year’s procession.

p251B jones bridge mob


 p202 prayer to the Nazarene


 941 JPEG1 women crowd


 941 JPEG2 yellow crowd CU


941 JPEG3 yellow crowd LS

%d bloggers like this: