As the country celebrated the Santo Nino Festival on Sunday, around 6,000 devotees from all the 30 barangays in Pasig City joined the grand parade of the Bambino Festival — its own version of honoring the Child Jesus.
The 19th Bambino Festival in honor of the young Jesus Christ is the grandest cultural celebration of Pasig City. It is included in the calendar of activities of the Department of Tourism (DoT). Bambino means “a baby or young child.”
All the 30 barangays in city took part, displaying their beautiful floats carrying different images of the Sto. Nino. Some floats even used sweets like lollipop to decorate them. The barangays were clustered into parishes.
Barangay San Antonio, one of participating barangays belonging to the Holy Family Parish headed by Rev Fr. Roy Rosales, outshone the other participants as they have 200 delegates and their float was decorated with flowers such as orchids.
They also have cultural dancers clad in black and green with headdresses, like in Cebu City.
“Ang pagtitipong ito ay pinagbubuklod ang mga Pasigueno bilang isang malaki at masayang pamilya——a one big happy family. Ito ay paraan din natin to show kung gaano tayo ka-grateful to God for all the blessings na iginawad niya sa atin,” Lising told reporters.
“Ang Sto. Nino ay tinuturuan tayo to become a child once again na mapagpatawad, simple, masunurin, self-less, at mapagmahal. Nawa ay tularan natin ang batang Jesus, let us be like children,” he added.
Pasig City Mayor Vico Sotto gave candies and chocolates to the devotees as their floats passed by the stage.
There were also residents that gave candies to children joining the parade.
Close to a thousand images of the Sto. Niño from the city’s 30 barangays and 15 parishes paraded around a 5 to 6 kilometer route from City Hall to the Immaculate Conception Cathedral.
Then, the images of Sto. Ninos were brought to the Immaculate Conception Cathedral as the Bishop blessed them.
A sufficient number of police and force multipliers were deployed to secure the parade route and ensure the safety of participants in the parade which lasted for more than four hours.