The Philippines is a predominantly Catholic country. During the Holy Week, while a lot of people go to the beach, majority of the population still elect to observe tradition. One such community is in Makati City, the country’s premier business district.
The Makati poblacion (community/village) keeps the Lenten rituals alive through the Kalbaryo. You won’t find Easter Egg Hunts here (thank God!). What you will find are several structures (over 50 this year) called kalbaryo (calvary) representing scenes of Jesus’ suffering scattered throughout the community.
Each kalbaryo is painstakingly created by a particular organization—even people living under the Makati-Mandaluyong bridge are represented—with life-sized images, elaborate set designs, and of course, at least two readers who sing the pasyon (Passion of Christ).
That Holy Thursday night when we went around the poblacion, what struck me most was that of the number of people going around, praying and looking at each kalbaryo, a lot of them were young ones. It made me feel really glad that our traditions are kept alive, and that it would still be observed in the years to come.
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