Pit Senyor!

Posted on: January 17, 2006

My ninos during the feast of the Sto. Nino
My ninos in Sinulog head regalia, complete with junk food in plastic bag…

The Sinulog mardi gras every 3rd Sunday of January is the culmination of the feast in honor of the Holy Child Jesus we endearingly call as the Sto. Nino. Even before the novena masses start, everyone seems to be on high-mode. The City gets decked up with colored buntings along the parade route. Replicas of Cebu’s Sto Nino Church or the Sto Nino icon crop up along the Fuente Osmena Circle. Ah yes, of course, the advertising companies are having the time of their lives busily hyping different events and street parties.

On the Saturday preceding the Sinulog, the biggest religious procession in the city takes place a little after lunch. It starts from the Basilica and passes through the commercial districts of downtown and uptown Cebu and goes back to starting point. Thousands of devotees flock to participate in this annual pilgrimage watching the re-enactment of the 1st baptism or the changing of the Sto Nino’s clothes, praying, venerating and waving to the 500 year old Sto Nino. It is praise-worthy that the crowd was well-organized inspite of the humongous traffic jam the re-routing of vehicles has caused. All for the love of the Holy Child.

Saturday night after the religious procession, the city comes more alive with concerts and live band music in every open space. It’s the start of the street partying. It is common to find yourself stuck in traffic at 12 midnight. This is party night for the Cebuanos and everyone seems to be out on the streets.

Early Sunday, even after staying up late the night before, people attend mass and gear up for the big mardi gras. The biggest parade of about a hundred dancing contingents from different schools, organizations, companies, and groups representing Metro Manila and provinces as far as Surigao del Norte assure everyone of a display of colors and dance routines well up to the early evening.

We tried to go as near as we could to watch the parade, but with 3 kids in tow, it was close to impossible. We were getting squashed by people from all sides. If your intention is to see the complete parade then you’re better off watching the live coverage on tv. However, most of the people on the streets were not there to seriously watch but were there just to take in the sights and sounds as well as the whole gamut of fiesta atmosphere permeating in the air. Cars are parked everywhere and families were setting up camp in the fields and open space of the Cebu Business Park. There was a helicopter for rent for those who could afford and would want to view the mardi gras from above. People in black shirts with headdresses or whistles or face paints are a common site.

Madonna and sons
In a sea of black shirts, headdressed, capped and face painted people, we donned a yellow shirt on Jake to spot him easily in the crowd. That’s a Sinulog survival tip. 😀

After the last of the dancing contingents has performed, the big event is capped with fireworks display. The best place to be at 930pm after the Sinulog is anywhere in the open spaces of Cebu Business Park where everyone is sure to be treated to a 3o-minute show of spectacular pyrotechnics.

If I keep on with the account of the Sinulog, I may not be able to fully describe the sights, sounds, smell and general atmosphere of this annual event. Rather than read or hear about it, it’s best to experience it and get yourself immersed for a day or two. However, this much I could tell you, the Sinulog is most probably the biggest event the Cebuanos celebrate in a year, perhaps even bigger than Christmas and New Year combined.

Viva Pit Senyor!




No Responses Yet to "Pit Senyor!"

wonderful pictures! the SInulog Festival sounds/looks very exciting. Parang Christmas & New Year all over again–and you get all in a span of 1 month!

i’ll get my first experience of Chinese NY celebration here in Singapore. i hope it would be fun!

your youngest Nino is cutest nino ever…look at that smile…very disarming. I havent been to Cebu during Sinulog. Must be a good photo op event noh?

Thanks! I would have wanted to take more of the grand parade… Next time baka puede na makipagsiksikan… Yes having Chinese in-laws, the next important occasion for the family is the Chinese New Year. 😀 Tell us about the Chinese NY in Singapore ha?

Of course, that’s my own nino! 😀 When you come visit for Christmas 2006, make it a long vacation coz, Sinulog will be on Jan 21, 2007. Hehehe…

hi mare! 🙂 ang ganda ng sinulog accessories nyo. cutest talaga si jake, ever.

we weren’t able to go out last Sunday ’cause it was yaya’s day off but we were able to join the procession last Saturday. got sooooo much to thank the Sto. Nino for!

Hello!!! Kami din “house-taged” every Sunday when Jake was smaller. Ngayon lang ulit nakaka-enjoy ng di na kailangang may nanny. 😀

I agree, there’s just so much to be thankful for. 😉

Pit Senyor is the appropriate greeting for the Sinulog! It being a short cut to “Sampit sa Senyor!” or in english “Calling the Child Jesus”! Pit Senyor! C U in Cebu next year!

I just hope that the child-like faith, true love and devotion of Cebuanos and millions of visitors to the Sto. Nino of Cebu was not lost in the midst of the dancing, prancing, and other forms of merry-making of participants in the Sinulog.

Pit Senyor, Hala Bira and Vivat Jesus everyone!

It’s getting bigger and more colorful every year. Imagine what it would be like in 2007! 😀

The religious procession is as big as the grand parade. I’d say more pilgrims and devotees have come this year to offer their novenas and venerate the Sto. Nino. 😀

Hello Linnor! Nice naman your pics!!! 🙂 I jsut have a question, i noticed that you were toting a bag that had a picture….is that a made to order bag? I’ve long wanted to get something like that kasi that I could put a favorite picture on, I’ve found one in Rockwell here in Manila but I think it’s too expensive….did you get it there or in Manila? thanks! 🙂

Thanks! Yes, that bag was custom-made here in Cebu. The price ranges from 300 (for a toiletry bag) to 800 (for a big tote bag). The time I had that made, that cost me about P400. 😀

i miss SINULOG in cebu, as well as ATI-ATIHAN in iloilo and kalibo! how fun!

Your family is so adorable with or without the headgear! And you captured those fireworks really well. Nice layout change btw.

Yes, the celebrations even get bigger and better each year

Aw, thanks *blushing*. Pa-cute masyado no? Hehehe…

hi te linnor!!! pit senyor! it’s must’ve been great to be able to venerate sto nino by attending the procession and novena and then party afterwards.

cute ng smile ni jake 🙂

HI DENDEN! Next year we hope to be able to join the religious procession and the grand parade/mardi gras. This year we were not as successful… 😉

ang ganda ng photos, Linnor! I wish one day I’d witness the Sinulog Festival. Kelan kaya? 😛

Hi Linnor. It has been ages since I dropped by the Sinulogfest. Wish I could go back to Cebu soon:)

Yes, I hope you include Cebu during Sinulog in your “list of places to visit” 😉

Oh please come back! It’s bigger and better every year. 😀

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I'm 1/5th of a party of 5 based in Cebu. I've been married to my best friend for 16 years and we dote on our 3 sons aged 15, 12, and 4.5 years old. I work in an IT company (for 3 years now) and work allows me to blog, twit, post pics, and try new tech stuff in the internet. If you happen to visit, feel free to look around. :) Or you can find me on blogspot too:

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