Palm Sunday in Tigbauan, Iloilo — April 2012

Share the joy

In the Philippines, communities re-enact Jesus’ triumphal entry with a procession. A statue of Christ on the donkey or the officiating priest mounted on horse process around or towards the local church, surrounded by the palm-bearing churchgoers. In some towns, elderly women spread heirloom “aprons” (made for this sole purpose) or large cloths along the procession route in imitation of the Jerusalemites.

Tigbauan angels getting ready

Children dressed as angels sometimes sing the Osana (“Hosanna”) whilst strewing flowers about.

Palm Sunday angels in Tigbauan

Tigbauan angels (at least for today!)

Once blessed, the palm branches (palaspas), are taken home by the faithful and are hung beside, on or above doorways and windows. Although the true purpose of this custom is to welcome Jesus Christ, many Filipinos hold the branches to be apotropaic, turning away any evil spirits as well as averting lightning strikes and fires.


Text adapted from Wikipedia

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