Feast of Nuestra Senora de Pe–afrancia

Nuestra Senora de Pe–afrancia, Feast of

Third week of September
A grand fiesta devoted to Our Lady of Peñafrancia, held in Naga City on the Bicol peninsula in the Philippines. Some 200 years ago a Spanish official attributed the recovery of his ill daughter to the lady and built a shrine to her in Naga City, starting the devotion to her that has lasted into the present.
This is the biggest festival of the Bicol region; it starts with a nine-day novena at the Naga Cathedral. A procession then carries the image of the Virgin to a pagoda on a festooned barge, which is surrounded by a flotilla of smaller boats. The people on the smaller boats chant prayers and hymns as they proceed along the river. Meanwhile, on the shore, pilgrims from other Bicol provinces kneel and pray as the barge passes by. When the water-borne pagoda has finished its journey, there are shouts of "Viva la virgen!" and the image is taken back to its shrine.
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Holidays, Festivals, and Celebrations of the World Dictionary, Fourth Edition. © 2010 by Omnigraphics, Inc.