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Thursday, January 10, 2013

Photo story: The Feast of Black Nazarene 2013

Feast of Black Nazarene 2013
I’m back again in blogging and also taking photos in the main site of the procession of the Black Nazarene. The feast in Quiapo is the most attended fiesta in the country and it’s also the most nearest and accessible for me, no need to travel or ride an airplane just to see the whole action. In blogging this feast, I found out that I started mentioning this with photos last 2008, there I used an old Olympus camedia point and shoot camera and then after a week, my wish granted by the Black Nazarene awarded me a free Olympus SP 500 UZ digital camera, a jumping upgrade that made me more interested in photography.
Photo cover above is taken by my iPhone4s, it is the closest shot that I took and I didn’t expected that I’ll end up standing near the bridge. I uploaded this up in my Instagram, Flickr and Facebook after the procession and also big crowd.

here are my photos captured using my Olympus E-520 dslr with 14-42mm Zuiko lens

Feast of Black Nazarene 2013 Feast of Black Nazarene 2013
Okay, my story started here as I arrived in Recto MRT station, I meet my sis Misyel here in a McDo Isetan, we ate our breakfast here and prepared for a walkathon going to Quiapo church, it was nearly 9am yesterday when we finished our breakfast. It’s a great sight to see Recto again and I started to miss this place after my FEU college graduation, its like home to me and proud to say that I grew up in Manila and know all the maze around here.


Feast of Black Nazarene 2013
the corners of Recto

Feast of Black Nazarene 2013 Feast of Black Nazarene 2013
After turning right, it’s a long walk going to Quiapo church, there we saw many people walking going to the church.

Feast of Black Nazarene 2013
Below the underpass, I spotted this beggar. The lady opened up her wallet and gave money


Feast of Black Nazarene 2013
I’m happy that I’m very loaded this season, I experienced that almost every year I don’t have money to buy a Feast of the Black Nazarene shirt. The shirts are customly made by the locals and here we spot a man silk screening a shirt for a devotee, you’ll have to bring your own shirt if you want to get a cheap print for your shirt. We bought a shirt nearby for only P70 for sando for kids and P100 for shirts for adults.
My sis got the maroon colored while me got the yellow one.

Feast of Black Nazarene 2013
Business as usual, lots of vendors roaming the streets, it’s a great opportunity for them to sell their good, millions of people walk around the street of Quiapo, expect buyers in every minute.

Feast of Black Nazarene 2013
Shirt designs of the Black Nazarene, I always like the shirt with the whole photo of the Black Nazarene carrying the cross, that kind of design display the real image of the Jesus in Black Nazarene, I just don’t like the face of Jesus only, with lots of blood and you can see his suffering, I admit that the photo of the face is bit scary, I bought the yellow shirt with Jesus carrying a cross, got that because I can wear the shirt in any normal day.

Feast of Black Nazarene 2013
Approaching Raon, vendors galore everywhere!

Feast of Black Nazarene 2013 Feast of Black Nazarene 2013
My sis and there’s me

Feast of Black Nazarene 2013
We bought some candles with prayers, I forgot the price of this candle, I think its around P10 only.


Feast of Black Nazarene 2013
Spotted this kid staring to an image of the Black Nazarene.

Feast of Black Nazarene 2013
Cops, firemen, paramedics, tv crew and media are everywhere

Feast of Black Nazarene 2013
We started walking after buying those shirts and candles, and then we saw that the road is getting smaller due to a large crowd of people around us and then it was the end of the road when all directions are blocked, it means that we are near the church.

Feast of Black Nazarene 2013
We don’t have a plan of turning back or going to the other side of the church, it’s a yearly tradition for us to go straight and then attend the mass even if we are standing outside the church and absorb the heat of the sun. I’m glad that I brought a hat and sunglasses that day. The sun is so hot and I also forgot to put sun block lotion.


Feast of Black Nazarene 2013
Before attending the mass, we bought this Everlasting flowers for only P55. Its been ages since we last bought and the flowers are still fresh. The flowers will not wit for a day but it will stay as is for months until it became color brown, that’s why it is called Everlasting.

Feast of Black Nazarene 2013
We arrive at the side of Quiapo church and there’s no access going forward, we stayed there and listened to the priest and hear the mass.

Feast of Black Nazarene 2013
Years ago, they just broadcast the audio of the mass via a speaker, but today they now broadcast the mass in big colored LCD screen, they posted several screen outside the church.

Feast of Black Nazarene 2013
I wonder who owns this flip flop, someone left their piece here, maybe because of a stampede-like incident. It happens every time when a large group of people enters the road, or during blessings with holy water.

Feast of Black Nazarene 2013
Devotee holds his small image of the Black Nazarene

Feast of Black Nazarene 2013
Shirt of a devotee from Malabon City

Feast of Black Nazarene 2013
After the mass, its time for the blessing, a representative of the church goes out and spray us with holy water. Everyone raise their hands and swirl white hanky or towel to receive the blessed water.

Feast of Black Nazarene 2013
So we did out thing too, and I swirl in the air those two shirts we bought, (those shirts are for Anya and Ashton). The church rep. approach our location and then the stampeded started as they keep on moving forward and raise their towels and hanky. The church rep. seems not tired and all sweaty, didn’t stop spraying us.

Feast of Black Nazarene 2013
Here’s the holy water going straight in front of me and also in my camera, see the white streaks?
It will be a perfect shot if ever the hand of the church rep. is seen here.


Feast of Black Nazarene 2013
After the blessing, me and my sis will eat our lunch in SM Manila. I told her that we take the route to the Quiapo bridge going down to the mall, and then I took this panoramic view of the side of Quiapo church using my iPhone4s.

Feast of Black Nazarene 2013
Passing by the last side of Quiapo church.

Feast of Black Nazarene 2013
Girl walks by holding her small image of the Black Nazarene

Feast of Black Nazarene 2013
We got a hard time entering the front of the church, because I want to take a photo of the front fa├žade,then we saw a blockade near the entrance after the road, there’s this group of people dress in white robes and a Jesus in costume performing seems like a healing session with their members. I took a photo of this old man sitting in throne like chair, I think it’s a club or some sort of org.


Feast of Black Nazarene 2013
This young lady cries so hard as this old lady embraces her and mention some prayers. I’m not sure what’s the scene here, but all of the ladies wearing white robes who are participating in this ritual are all crying.

Feast of Black Nazarene 2013
I spotted also this another Jesus in costume, his crown of thorns are made of metal. He tells something about that stick he holds, I heard that is holy and it came from a tree near the church.


Feast of Black Nazarene 2013
I saw another Jesus look a like, wearing a sando and holding a stick. I’m not sure what’s his business but we see lots of Jesus in cosplay every feast here in Quiapo.
Feast of Black Nazarene 2013
Here’s my panoramic photo of Quiapo chuch. almost every year the view changes, and here we spotted that white building standing beside the church, if you saw the old photos, that building is not yet present. I heard that the building stood there last 2012 and many photographers disappointed to see that building.
I took this panoramic photo using my iPhone4s

Feast of Black Nazarene 2013
Here’s for the Instagram version
Feast of Black Nazarene 2013
Another view of the front of Quiapo church
I realized that I don’t have yet a Quiapo church feature here in my collection of churches in this blog, maybe in the next Holy week, I’ll visit all Manila church and start a feature. I started collecting photo blogs of church after I experienced my 1st visita iglesia in Cebu.

Feast of Black Nazarene 2013
Going to the market place is one of my favorite spot, I’m not sure if I’ll buy food here or buy anything weird. This way goes to Quiapo ilalim and SM Carriedo.


Feast of Black Nazarene 2013
This arc brings you to Carriedo MRT

Feast of Black Nazarene 2013
Because it’s a feast, locals and visitors from all over the country flock here, you can buy food here and watch lion dancers, musical band and eat street food.

Feast of Black Nazarene 2013
Dried fish welcomed us, I call this the mini Taboan

Feast of Black Nazarene 2013
Yummy hotdogs!!! omg..I want to buy one but we need to move forward because another large crowd of people are coming in and they are behind us


Feast of Black Nazarene 2013
Fresh shrimps and veggies are sold here

Feast of Black Nazarene 2013
Its rare to see strawberries being sold here in Manila.

Feast of Black Nazarene 2013
The store here gives free drinking water to all devotees.

Feast of Black Nazarene 2013 Feast of Black Nazarene 2013
Replicas of the image of the Black Nazarene are spotted here.




Feast of Black Nazarene 2013
Here’s a happy grandpa walks around carrying the image on his shoulder


Feast of Black Nazarene 2013
Los of teens seen here joining the procession


Feast of Black Nazarene 2013
Street food are always the best, I’m so tempted to buy but I need to reserve my tummy for a nice lunch meal in Kung Fu Kitchen in SM Manila. This pasta looks good! I like it all colored red, that’s pasta with lots of UFC catsup

Feast of Black Nazarene 2013
Fresh lumpia are also a popular food here in Quiapo.

Feast of Black Nazarene 2013
After the long walks, we arrived the bridge that leads us to Lawton, I think this will be my last route during the feast, I started to hate walking here because some devotees used the concrete as their rest room, foul smell welcomed us and the smell is present again from the end of the bridge.


Feast of Black Nazarene 2013
me…I still smiled even that the foul smell is present for 3 minutes hahahaha

Feast of Black Nazarene 2013
me and my sis.

Feast of Black Nazarene 2013
Walking to SM Manila, we spotted this puto and kutsinta vendor in motorcycle.

Feast of Black Nazarene 2013
Also blind singers are everywhere, I spotted 4 of them singing their kind of tunes

Feast of Black Nazarene 2013
At last SM Manila!, saw paramedics walking on the street, I think they ate their lunch and took a break. We ate at Kung Fu Kitchen and ordered a yummy pata tim, kenya beans and pork, mango yohgurt milk tea and yangchow fried rice. We also met our fellow blogger Florencio here, he also covered the procession all the way from Luneta. He told us that the procession is already near National Museum, looks like that the image of the Black Nazarene is carried well and moves fast compare to last year incident that the image stayed infront of Manila City Hall for almost 5 hours.

When I heard that news from Florencio, my plan is to go back to the bridge and will spot the image there when the arrive. I will have to position myself on top of the bridge and take photos there. I downloaded a map of the route from my iPhone4s, thanks to ABS CBN for that map.

It rained so hard after we left SM Manila, me and Florencio walk under the LRT, I’m glad that we have umbrellas, then my sis took a different route and went home after our lunch. Then when we approach Lawton, I saw people still stands on the roof of the overpass, that’s my usual spot in taking photos of the procession, then I realized that if there are many people standing and waiting, it means that the image is nearby and haven’t passed by Lawton. Me and Florencio ran across the main road and there we spotted the image walking slowly and welcomed again by millions of Filipino devotees of the Black Nazarene.

It’s a spark of joy for me. I thought that I’ll miss this view again. Even it was raining, I didn’t even think that my camera might short circuit, I took out my camera and began shooting. I was near the image and the only thing that blocks infront of me are tons of people and a concrete of the bridge.

Feast of Black Nazarene 2013
It’s a different view for me, and this is my 2nd time shooting it on ground, there are lots of tension as always, and people bump me from the front and the back, I’m starting to get cautious because my iPhone4 might get lost or maybe some opportunist thief might victimize me, so I shoot carefully and check my things and pockets every seconds. It was raining so hard, I have lots of misfocus shots because of the spot of rain on my camera lens, I took out my reserve clothes and started to wipe the lens and then I started to cover my camera whenever I raise it up to get a better shot.

Feast of Black Nazarene 2013
I have the 14-42mm lens, but this is the full zoom that it can do for me, but its okay.

Feast of Black Nazarene 2013
The action resumes when the image started to move, people are pushing and then some catches the person who fell from jumping from the concrete of the bridge. I know many people got hurt here. In this photo, I think this is the scene were all of the people standing on the concrete fell all together into the ground, it was like chaos and I thought that the bridge’s concrete collapses. Dust and smoke afterwards but then all those who got hurt must fall back and the ones who are behind them moves forward. It is the survival of the fittest.
Feast of Black Nazarene 2013
Many devotees fight their way like swimming into sea of people just to approach the image, I got also the idea to try go near, but because I have a gear with me,it will be risky that I may loose my things or damage my camera.

Feast of Black Nazarene 2013
The image started to move so fast and then the flow of people followed it

Feast of Black Nazarene 2013
Here’s the aftermath, I took a self portrait after some relief


Feast of Black Nazarene 2013
But there’s another tension here, there’s a slight stampede and many people want to jump out of the bridge going to the road, while others want to climb up the bridge, expect chaos again, you’ll see a tug of war of people scrambled in one place.

Feast of Black Nazarene 2013
The image walks so fast and I can see it here that they reach the midway of the bridge going to other side of town.


Feast of Black Nazarene 2013
I used my 40-50mm Zuiko lens here to zoom in and capture the action, then I realized that the safest thing to view the image is to stand infront of Metropolitan theater. It’s a safe place to stay if you want to cover the procession, less people and lots of room to move. You’ll see the image pass by over the bridge, you can look up and pray as it approaches infront of you.

Feast of Black Nazarene 2013
I still miss this spot, here we saw lots of shooters standing on the roof of this over pass.

Feast of Black Nazarene 2013
I spotted this devotee who got injured, I think he has splinters under his foot.

Feast of Black Nazarene 2013
Other image replicas arrives, some of them are covered with plastic, just to protect it from the rain.


Feast of Black Nazarene 2013
My last view of the procession, at first I thought that I’ll miss this, but with prayers that I made, my wish came true and here I got another awesome photo story to share.

Feast of Black Nazarene 2013
Thanks everyone for reading my photo story coverage of the feast of Nazarene, maybe next year, I should find another shooting location to get a better view of the image of the Black Nazarene.

See you next year!
For the Feast of the Black Nazarene 2014.

The blogger

Azrael Coladilla is the blogger of Azrael's Merryland. This blog started as a personal blog in 2003, and then converted the blog into a lifeblog about his interest and reporting about pop culture, lifestyle, entertainment, technology, food, travel, toys, outdoor adventure, internet and social media. Awarded as the 2009 Most Influential Blogger for Luzon, Philippines, awarded by the Philippine Blog Awards. He is a full time blogger and photographer and freelance events organizer, social media specialist and marketing consultant. He is the founder of several online communities - Manila Bloggers Network, PBNetwork PH, Oh My Food! community, Cavite Bloggers, and Philippine ToyCon. He loves traveling, eating, watch movies, meet new people, photography and collects Transformers toys.

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