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No ‘penitentia’, physical ‘pabasa’: Joy Belmonte, bishops agree to limit Holy Week activities in QC

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Quezon City Mayor Joy Belmonte and the bishops of the Dioceses of Cubao and Novaliches have agreed to limit Holy Week activities to arrest the rise in number of COVID-19 cases.

Belmonte met on Thursday, March 11, with Bishops Roberto Gaa and Honesto Ongtioco of the Diocese of Novaliches and Cubao, respectively, and agreed to implement some restrictions in the observance of the Holy Week, which will begin on March 28 until April 4.

It was agreed during the meeting that the conduct of penitentia or traditional penance involving self-flagellation, crucifixion or self-infliction of pain will be prohibited.

Physical gatherings for pabasa or reading of the passion of Christ is prohibited. Virtual or online pabasa is instead encouraged.

The traditional Visita Iglesia or Stations of the Cross are also encouraged to be practiced online, she added.

Public gatherings for palaspas or Palm Sunday on March 28 and salubong or the welcoming of the risen Christ on Easter Sunday shall be suspended.

“Alam kong matagal na nating itong tradisyon subalit wala tayong magagawa kundi pansamantala itong isantabi habang naririto pa ang virus at mabilis ang pagtaas ng mga kaso natin,” said Belmonte.