Wednesday, April 01, 2015

Lent meanderings etc.

Photo not mine: torture porn?
I heard snare drums and shouts. I looked out and saw a group of children and teenagers dressed in first century Roman and Jewish clothing re-enacting passion of the Christ through our narrow eskenitas.

This is a yearly tradition that I used to join when I was a child, when were still Roman Catholics. But now that our family has been converted to the Southern Baptist tradition, we now believed that the humiliation and the sufferings that Jesus Christ went through was a one time event that happened tow thousand years ago and was meant to give saving grace to humanity: Christ has done it so that anyone would not have to go through the sacrifice again and again.

Old ladies singing the pasyon the traditional way.
Being a Baptist, there's this negative attitude towards how Filipinos observe lent: the pabasa, prusisyon, penitensya, bisita iglesya etc. I believe,as taught by pastors, that all these activities and traditions were unbiblical and hence are un-Christian. But as the Catholics would argue, the Roman Catholic Church has existed for almost four hundred years without the Bible (as we know it now) and has done well using traditions as its guide, which is really a good argument for their doctrine that tradition is an equal authority along with the Bible on church matters.

I cannot imagine lent without the pabasa and the senakulo. The pabasa is getting rarer now, at least in our neighborhood. I missed the off key and and atonal harmonization singing of the passion of the Christ. Lately, they have been adapting modern tunes though there's nothing wrong with it and it is even encouraged by some to promote the pabasa to the younger generations, I missed the old tunes and the vibrato that goes along with the singing.

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