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Thursday, January 15, 2015

“Pasalamat” dance rituals to follow after Novena mass at Cathedral grounds

By Gideon C. Corgue 

PAGADIAN CITY – Despite the city government’s cancellation of this year’s street dancing and ritual competition - used to be the main attraction of “Pangadyian Festival” - due to security reasons, pilgrims, local tourists, and devotees of patron saint Sr. Sto. Nino may still join the dance ritual every after Novena Mass starting Jan. 9-17.

Mayor Romeo Pulmones said the Fiesta Executive Council 2015 would continue to observe the “Pangadyian Sayaw Pasalamat” to encourage the faithful Catholics to fulfill their religious obligations called “panaad” in Cebuano.

As a religious celebration, Pulmones said, the devotees would flock to Sto. Nino Cathedral to attend the Novena Mass and join the ritual dancing at the vicinity of the church to offer a dance in honor of the miraculous image of Sto. Nino.

The mayor disclosed that there are nine contingents who will perform the ritual dancing, namely: The Holy Child Academy, Saint Columban High School, Pagadian Golden School, Zamboanga del Sur School of Arts and Trades, Gaisano Capital, Zamboanga del Sur Electric Cooperative (ZAMSURECO-I), Pagadian Science High School, Lucan Central Colleges, and Sta. Lucia National High School.

Meanwhile, “Pangadyian Sayaw Pasalamat” chairman Councilor Cesar Dacal Jr. said the contingents, dressed in bright colored costumes, will perform first the ritual dance to the beat of “Pasalamat Sayaw Festival” music and then teach the devotees who are bringing with them the image of Sto. Ninoto do the dance steps.

Dacal said “the performers and devotees will dance not to worship their native idols but as a sign of reverence to Sto. Nino who helped them in giving special protection and abundant blessings in a year.” The event will start at 6:30 p.m. and will end at about midnight.

In a related development, Pulmones said everyone has a personal and shared responsibility to work together collectively for the success of the feast of Sr. Sto. Nino.

As thousands of Filipinos are expected to attend the nine-day Novena Mass and “Pasalamat Sayaw Festival,” Pulmones appealed to everyone to cooperate with the law enforcers in securing the vicinity of the church.

“I urge the spectators to refrain from bringing backpacks and hats while they are inside the church and while witnessing the ritual dance to ensure the safety of all persons attending the annual parochial fiesta celebration,” Pulmones concluded.