Monday, January 28, 2013

136. Retro-Santo: LA PURISIMA CONCEPCION of Malabon

LARAWANG TUNAY NG MAHAL NA BIRHEN. "La Purisima Concepcion". Malabon, Rizal. ca. 1960s.

Malabon’s most important Marian image is the Immaculate Conception, a 3-foot image believed to be over 300 years old. Enshrined at the parish dedicated to Her, the image has very graceful lines, with delicately chiselled features, with hands in a prayerful pose.

 Our Lady is dressed in flowing white robes and two wind-blown mantles, one of gold and the other in red and blue. She stands on a globe with a serpent crushed under her feet. Her magnificent metalworks include a crown, a halo and a luminous silver sun and crescent moon before the globe.

For the past 63 years, the people of Malabon and Navotas honor the image with a fluvial procession held every December 9. Before being installed in an altar on a casco or a decorated barge, the image is paraded along the streets on an anda, carried by men and followed by people serenading her to the borrowed tune of “Santa Clarang, pinung-pino”.

The image is then brought to the church for a 4 p.m. Mass; after which, our Lady is conveyed on the barge by fisherfolks as the rosary is prayed and Marian hymns are sung. The barge sets sail for the Navotas River, following the river bank, until the revered image is returned to the church.

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