There is more to Sinulog than what meets the eye.
Aside from the events and the street dancing there is something deeper going on in the hearts of the Cebuano’s and devotees from far away. Sinulog is the celebration of the feast of The Sto Niño – The Patron of the City of Cebu. We Cebuano’s believe that the Sto Niño has always protected us and will always answer our prayers and favors as long as we show him our devotion to him. You will see this devotion in the Basilica everyday when you visit. People from all walks of life come on a daily basis to hear mass and to line up in cue just to see the child Jesus and wave and kiss the glass that protects his image. You see women dancing the Sinulog outside the basilica. The dance is an offering of prayers to the child Jesus.
During the fest of the Sto Niño numerous religious activities are being concluded. It begins with the Nine day novena with masses that starts as early as 4am until 8pm everyday. This is attended by thousands of devotees every day. It is believed that attending these novena masses for nine consecutive days brings countless blessings. Some do this to ask a favor and some do think in gratitude for favors answered. On Friday before it’s fest the Sto Niño is taken from the basilica together with the Lady of Guadalupe to the church of St. Joseph in Mandaue City, This is held with a procession early in the morning where thousands line up to wave at him. This is concluded with a mass. On this day the child Jesus is reunited with his Mother the Lady of Guadalupe and her father St. Joseph. On Saturday before The Sto Niño is taken from the St. Joseph church in Mandaue City to a Gallon for the grand fluvial parade that will take him back to the Basilica. This depicts the arrival of the image of the Sto Niño here in Cebu for the very first time. On Saturday thousands attend the solemn procession to mark the end of the nine day novena.
We practice this religious devotion as a Catholic City for so long; this religious custom has been handed down from one generation to another. We have been taught that the Sto Niño is miraculous and it has always favored those who are devoted to him. There are hundred of stories of people who have experienced his miracle in their lives. That is why during the fest of the Sto Niño millions of Cebuano’s attend to show out Patron our gratitude. This is our belief and our custom; I hope that we continue to hand this down in the next generation to come. It is our responsibility to be able to teach our children our Catholic tradition so they will not be lost in all of these revelries.
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