Taclobanons, Leyteños to celebrate Sr. Sto. Niño fiesta
Eileen Nazareno-Ballesteros (The Freeman) - June 21, 2017 - 4:00pm

TACLOBAN CITY, Philippines — Taclobanons and Leyteño devotees of Señor Santo Niño de Tacloban will be celebrating the 128th Fiesta of the patron saint with various activities scheduled to be held from June 20 to 30.

After the Novena Masses, which started on Tuesday—as well as the Balyuan (exchange) rites of the icons of the Holy Child between one at the Sto. Niño Parish Church and the other at Barangay Buscada in Basey, Samar—cultural and social events are up for the people to participate in.

Major socio-cultural activities will be the Pintados-Kasadyaan Festival of Festivals (PKFF) and the Sangyaw Festival competitions.

For the Fiesta day Masses, Palo Archbishop John Du will be the main celebrant in the morning concelebrated pontifical Mass and Cebu Auxiliary Bishop Oscar Florencio, as the main celebrant, while in the Vespers Mass, Naval Bishop Filomeno Bactol will be the main celebrant.

Organizers of the Pintados-Kasadyaan Festival of Festivals said they are satisfied with the security preparations for the event, but asked the faithful to pray for safety for all throughout the annual activity.

Palo town (Leyte) Mayor Remedios Loreto-Petilla, a pioneering organizer of Kasadyaan Festival of Festivals, said this year’s PKFF is offered as a homage and prayer supplication to the heavenly patron of Tacloban City and Leyte province for peace in the entire country, especially in Mindanao.

The mayor, who was instrumental in the creation of the festival when she was then governor of Leyte in the mid-1990s, said she is thankful to the Señor Santo Niño for the continued success of the crowd-drawing twin-billed festivals.

She likewise attributed the continued staging of PKFF to the unrelenting support of the town mayors in Leyte and the leadership of the province of Leyte, now under the administration of her son, Governor Leopoldo Dominico Petilla.

This year’s PKFF, scheduled on June 27 morning, nine contingents will be vying for the championship: Lubi-Lubi Festival of Calubian town, Buraburon Festival of Burauen, Tolo-Usa of Tolosa, Buyugan Festival of Abuyog, Sanggutan of Barugo, Kaplag of Mahaplag, Maisayaw of San Isidro, Ibid of Caibiran (Biliran province), and Patiklos Festival of Sta. Rita (Samar province).

Petilla said that there will be no more ritual presentation during the parade along the main thoroughfares of the city proper considering that the Tacloban City government has only allotted only one lane to PKFF.

The city government is staging its own Sangyaw Festival, which was also started from the time the Romualdez family took the helm of governance of Tacloban.

This year, the city government, under Mayor Cristina Gonzales-Romualdez, wife of her predecessor three-term mayor Alfred, will hold the Sangyaw Festival using the full width of the city’s main thoroughfares. (FREEMAN)

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