MANILA, Philippines – Malacañang urged devotees of the Black Nazarene to look out for one another as they join the annual Traslacion procession on Monday, January 9.
"Let us just be careful, and let us still remain calm and sober, and let us again look out for one another," Presidential Spokesman Ernesto Abella said in an interview with state-run dzRB on Saturday, January 7.
"On the other hand," he added, "let us continue to enjoy the benefits of folk spirituality."
The Palace issued this reminder as Interior Secretary Ismael Sueno said the terrorist Maute Group as well as the Abu Sayyaf Group might target the Feast of the Black Nazarene on Monday.
The Feast of the Black Nazarene is held on January 9 each year.
It is expected to draw up to 8 million devotees raring to touch or see a 17th-century mulatto image of Jesus Christ, in a procession called the Traslacion.
Police earlier said more than 5,700 law enforcers will be deployed to secure Nazareno devotees on Monday.
Paterno R. Esmaquel II, news editor of Rappler, specializes in covering religion and foreign affairs. He obtained his MA Journalism degree from Ateneo and later finished MSc Asian Studies (Religions in Plural Societies) at RSIS, Singapore. For story ideas or feedback, email him at email@example.com.