Naga city, September 15, 2012.–For the third consecutive years, Cbanga360/Bicol Street Journal will cover the Peñafrancia Fluvial Procession via live blogging as our infotechcomm gadgets permit. So keep refreshing the page as we update and post the live events on this page.
3:00 am: A Penitential Procession of INA & Divino Rostro at the Cathedral grounds 6:00 am: Pontifical Mass, Cathedral, Archdiocese of Caceres, Archbishop Leonardo Z. Legaspi 10:00 am: Pontifical Mass, Cathedral, Diocese of Legazpi, Bishop Joel Baylon. 12:000 nn: Ringing of Bells
3:00 P.M. Last mass held at the Cathedral waas completed. From this time up to 4:00 PM, one hour preparatiion which include transferring the images to their respective carriages. Outside the Cathedral, the doorway are guarded and heavily cordoned as enforced by the PNP, AFP and volunteer voyadores. The procession will exit through the door facing the Colegio de Santa Isabel side, then turning right.
Trivia: During the fluvial procession of September 19, 1987, the image of the Virgin of Peñafrancia fell on the river by the embarcation point. The image was recovered but the crown was lost on the murky waters. On August 2008, the same area underwent a dredging opration in preparation for the coming fluvial. The crew not only cleaned-up the river but also recovered the lost crown and verified by church authorities as authentic. Twenty five years today, the event is recalled, and the recovered crown is now on display at the Peñafrancia museum.
9/17/1972 Live Blogging the Sorrows and Pains of Colgante Tragedy
3:31 P.M. The carriage of Divino Rostro is coming out of the gate, a human chain surrounding the carriage made the flow swiftly. Layers of layers of military (army) and police (PNP) forming a human chain surrounding the carriage protect the vehicle from being even touched by voyadores and spectators. While the image of the Virgin is still inside the church. The human chain composed of military personnel were so effective at guarding the carriage the procession flow is running smoothly unlike previous years. With the use of the spherical carriage, the flow of procession was effectively hastened unlike before when it was not yet introduced. Before, flow of the procession was so slow and unpredictable as dictated by the zigzagging chain of voyadores.
Trivia The images being carried on the procession are believed to be replicas of the original images which are safely kept at the Basilica Minore.
3:48 P.M. The image of Ina is still inside the church. It will be out on her own carriage at exactly 4:00 P.M., thereby giving ample procession space for the Divino Rostro.
3:55 P.M. Priests carry the image of Ina towards the main exit door escorted by the military. Four priests reached out the image and mounted ontop of the carraige. We have yet to confirm if those four “priest” assigned for each carriage are really priest or seminarians.
4:03 P.M. The main gate opens as the carriage is ushered out into the street. the four priests are made busy receiving kerchiefs thrown by specatator, then wiped on the image and thrown back to the crowd.
Trivia. According to the records of the Catholic Church here, the first celebration of the feast of the Our Lady of Peñafrancia was held in September 1710. From then on, miracles credited to the devotion to Ina were recorded.
9/16/1972 Live Blogging at the Colgante Bridge.
4:26 P.M. At the embarcation point at barangay Tabuco, below the bridge, which is about a stone’s throw from the Naga city public market, all are ready to receive the images. The dominant colorsof shirts worn by the voyadores on the boats are golden yellow and red. The water level is still very low despite the rain last night. Some spectators are even standing on the river. Hundreds of volunteer voyadores on small boats are now ready.
180 200 individuals, which include the bishops and priests of diffrent dioceses will be accomodated on the “Pagoda.” Twelve of which would come from the media group. These individuals have prior approval and carry ID’s for proper and priority embarcation.
4:40 P.M. The image of Divino Rostro has arrived at the embarcation point. Devotees are waving white kerchiefs to the image. The image will be removed from the carriage and eventually trasnferred to the waiting Pagoda. It is expected that within thirty mintues, the image of Ina will arrive. People on the riverbanks are getting excited. It is notable here that on the riverbanks where the fluvial procession is destined to pass, several rosary prayer staions are located in cooperation with residents and religious community.
Trivia. A Spanish government official from Peñafrancia, Spain, a native of San Martin de Castanar, the Covarrubias family, settled with his family in Cavite in 1712, according to locals. One day, a son, Miguel Robles de Covarrubias, a seminarian studying in the Universidad de Santo Tomas, Manila got very ill. He and his family prayed to Our Iady of Penafrancia whose picture he was clutching to his breast for his recovery and to spare his life. He also made a vow that if cured, he would construct a chapel by the bank of Pasig River in Manila, in gratitude to Her. Miraculously cured, he eventually was ordained a priest not in Manila but in the Ciudad de Nueva Caceres (now known as Naga City) by Bishop Andres Gonzalez.
5:11 P.M. Devotees earlier have lighted candles on both sides of the riverbanks. There is a slight delay of the image of Ina a while. The flow of the fluvial procession is fast with the aide of the hundreds of small boats pulling the Pagoda. The water level has increased. Rescue boats are sailing side by side with the Pagoda. Very noticiable that the flow is very fast with this kind of sailing tempo, the fluvial entourage should arrive before six P.M. We note here that maybe, because of orderly crowd and devotees, the procesion is going faster than expected. Still, on both banks of the river, people have lighted candles and wave white kerchiefs. At this time, the pagoda has passed the Delfin Rosales bridge at Panganiban.
TriviaThis September is the 130th year celebration of the Il Divino Rostro as part of the Penafrancia festivities.
5:27 PM. The boatmen (regatta) are volunteers that come from outlying towns of Naga city and other municipalites. Colorful boats are a sight to see as they pull the Pagoda. Way back many years ago the fluvial procession takes time before reaching the disembarcation station. The keyword here was organization, order and discipline.
5:41 PM. The fluvial procession is interspersed with the constant sights and sounds of fireworks. Residents and devotees can’t contain their excitement. The city government is very commendable here with the construction of viewing decks/ stand by the riverbank. Spectators, visitors and tourists alike are given equal opportunity to view the passing scene. The success of celebration and safety of everyone is more apparent today more than ever.
5:44 PM. The fluvial entourage is now at the Magsaysay bridge, the disembarcation station. Also commendable here is the successful maintenance of order by the presence of the members of the PNP and the army. As always, the endless shout of “Viva La Virgen!” and “Viva Il Divino Rostro!” is resounding.
5:48 PM. What a sight! Blue and white balloons set free, and blown by the wind!!! As the Pagoda goes under the Magsaysay bridge then to disembark.
5:30 PM. Very beautiful!! The sight of the Pagoda and the hundreds of boats look fantastic and fascinating as the hundreds of candlelight become more evident with the afternoon sun setting on the horizon!
5:52 PM. Approaching the landing site, the Bishops are blessing the people situated on both riverbanks. Also on the Pagoda is Manila Archbishop Luis Antonio Gokim Tagle. While the fluvial procession is on-going, confession is in progress at the Basilica grounds.
6:14 PM. Ina has disembarked. The Divino Rostro has disembarked. On the left side of the Basilica will pass the group of priests that will carry the images. Fronting the main entrance a temporary altar was constructed. Mass celebration will be outside to accomodate the thousands of devotees present.
6:20 PM. The unrelenting shout of Viva La Virgen! Viva La Virgen! The lighted candles looked like a sea of fireflies!
6:26 PM: Pontifical Mass, Basilica Grounds, Manila Archbishop Luis Antonio Gokim Tagle with all bishops of the Archdiocese concelebrate mass. It is very well known that Bishop Tagle is a good speaker. Expect he will give a very good homily. The mass should take about one hour and fifteen minutes. We will stay and listen to his message.
Afterwards, we expect fireworks as part of the culmination of celebration. Ina is now home. Happy Peñafrancia fiesta!!