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Cebu News

Augustinian community sets 453rd Kaplag activities

May B. Miasco - The Freeman

CEBU, Philippines — The Augustinian community in Cebu has slated several activities in anticipation of this year’s feast of “Kaplag” that commemorates the finding of the Santo Nino image.

The Augustinian order of the Basilica Minore del Santo Niño de Cebu, the custodian of the highly-revered Christian relic, is set to organize religious and cultural activities in line with the event that seeks to deepen the devotion of the people to the Santo Niño or the Holy Child Jesus.

"The (religious order of the) Basilica Minore del Santo Niño de Cebu will be celebrating again the Kaplag festivities commemorating the 453rd anniversary of the finding of the image of Señor Santo Niño de Cebu," said Father Ric Anthony Reyes of the Order of the Augustinian (O.S.A.).

“Kaplag” is a root word from the Cebuano term “pagkakaplag,” which means finding in English. This word has been used for centuries referring to the annual feast of the rediscovery of the wooden image by Spanish soldier Juan Camus in the burned ruins of a pre-Spanish settlement in Cebu in 1565.

Stretching back in 1521, it was given originally as a gift to Rajah Humabon and his wife by explorer Ferdinand Magellan when he landed on the island.

This image, which is one of the country's oldest religious icons believed to be miraculous, has been a prominent symbol of Christianity in the Philippines whose traditions and customs continue to flourish until today.

With this, Reyes said the religious activities such as the novena Masses and the pilgrim visits were "improved" in all aspects to be continually persistent in the promotion of the devotion to the Santo Niño.

Reyes invited all Christians, especially the devotees, to join the celebration honoring the Holy Child Jesus to nourish their spirituality.

There will be a novena leading to the feast day on April 28 that will kick off on April 19 with a Mass or the "Opening Salvo" at the Magellan's Cross at 12 noon.

After the Mass, the pilgrim image of the Santo Niño will then be sent to the Perpetual Succour Hospital along Gorordo Avenue.

On April 20, the image will leave the hospital at 1 p.m. and will be transferred to the Our Mother of Perpetual Help Parish also known as "Redemptorist Church" along Queen's Road.

On this day, too, the second day of the Novena Mass will be at 3 p.m. But from April 21 or the third day novena until the ninth day, Masses will be at 5:30 p.m.

On April 22, the pilgrim image will leave at the Redemptorist Church at 1 p.m. for it to be brought to Cebu Provincial Detention and Rehabilitation Center (CPDRC) in Barangay Kalunasan.

The next day (April 23), the image will be moved to Cebu Metropolitan Cathedral along Mabini Street and will also be visiting San Nicolas De Tolentino Parish Church along C. Padilla Street on April 24 and will stay there for about two days.

The anticipated 12th Huñino songwriting competition is set on April 25 at 7 p.m. at the Pilgrim Center inside the Basilica complex.

On April 26, from San Nicolas De Tolentino Parish Church, the image will be travelling to the Monastery of the Holy Eucharist, popularly known as Simala Shrine, in Sibonga, southern Cebu.

While at the Pilgrim Center, there will be an evening event or a theatrical show that will portray the finding of the Santo Niño image.

The last day of the novena will be celebrated through a Mass at 5:30 p.m., the 53rd anniversary of the elevation of the then San Agustin Church as a minor basilica.

On the feast day will be the arrival of the pilgrim image in the morning at the basilica from Simala Shrine that will be accompanied with the Marian image of Lindogon, Simala.

It will be followed with a fiesta Mass that will be presided over by Father Sisinio Paderog, the vicar provincial of the Augustinian Province of Santo Niño de Cebu. (FREEMAN)

 

BASILICA MINORE DEL SANTO NIñO DE CEBU

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