Holy Week Procession in San Mateo Rizal

On days culminating the Lenten season, Filipinos are accustomed to participate in the various traditions and rituals between Palm Sunday and Easter Sunday. This year, we spent our Holy Week in San Mateo Rizal.

Widely participated in San Mateo are the processions on Holy Wednesday and Good Friday where sixty two life-size religious statues depicting characters and key events in the passion of Christ are paraded on the streets.

On both separate events, the church patio of the Diocesan Shrine of  Nuestra Señora de Aranzazu and the main street in front of the church swell with images on decorated carrozas. Each carroza are trailed by devotees reciting the rosary or a brass band. Since the Lenten month falls on summer, it is a sultry afternoon and the procession moves through a wall of heat made even more intense by candle flames.

The procession consists of two distinct parts: first part presents the important characters leading to the Crucifixion and Burial of Christ. Second part are tableaus depicting the Passion of Christ. In San Mateo, the procession were led by the four Evangelists then by the Apostles followed by key personalities present during the Crucifixion and scenes of the Passion of Christ and Mary.

According to procession expert Basilidez Bautista in Cuaresma, there can only be one of each event in the Passion or paso in a procession. In some processions, however, there have been two or more versions of certain paso. This situation arises when members of a community become financially able, and wish to have their own carrozas.

To accommodate them, pasos that lend themselves to acceptable variations are given an additional biblical character, or have certain details of the event isolated and portrayed. In the San Mateo procession, The Washing of the Feet and Last Supper are depicted on separate floats.

The line-up for San Mateo Holy Wednesday and the Good Friday processions is identical, with the exception of the Pieta, a tableau of Christ being brought down from the Cross, and Christ on bier, which are brought out only for the Santo Entierro procession on Good Friday.

In Holy Week processions, the Tres Marias are constant: Maria Magdalena, the sinner turned saint who is portrayed with a vial of perfume; Maria Cleofe, mother of the apostles James the Younger; and Maria Jacobe, mother of the apostle James the Greater and John, whose iconography includes a broom.

Santa Veronica’s story has proved quite appealing to Catholics. One of the women of Jerusalem, she was filled with compassion when she saw the bloodied Jesus on the way to Calvary. She gently took cloth, which was folded thrice, to his face. Unfolded, the cloth revealed three imprints of the face of Christ. Her name comes from Greek veron meaning true icon.

The Mater Dolorosa is traditionally the last image in all Holy Week processions. Dressed in blue and white on Holy Wednesday, she is in mourning black on Good Friday. Hands clasped, tears poised on her cheeks, she it the very image of sorrow.

Bautista pointed out that in Her many personifications, the image of the Sorrowful Mother may be adorned with the araw, a halo around her face, instead of atop her head. Twelve stars signifying St. John’s Vision of the Apocalypse might also encircle her lovely face.

Her heart is pierced with seven daggers, signifying her Siete Dolores (by which title she is also known) or seven dolors of pains. These are the prophecy of Simon foretelling the destiny of her Son; their flight to Egypt; the lost of Jesus for three days; her standing beneath the cross at Calvary; her receiving on her lap the sacred body of Jesus after it was taken down from the cross; and her witnessing the burial of the body of Jesus.

The principal figure is the Santo Sepulcro or Christ in the sepulcher dressed in a richly embroidered cape with tres potencias resting on His chest.   Tres Potencias –the rays on Jesus’ head are reserved for the members of the Holy Trinity: God the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit.

References:
Benjamin Baislidez Bautista in Cuaresma

Related posts: San Mateo Holy Wednesday Procession | Kakanin Festival | Grand Sto. Nino Procession in San Mateo | San Mateo Ati-atihan | San Mateo Rizal |

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52 CommentsLeave a comment

  1. do u have the list for the line up of carrozas?🙂

    • 1. SAN MARCOS
      2. SAN LUCAS
      3. SAN PEDRO
      4. SAN ANDRES
      5. SNTIAGONG-MATANDA
      6. SAN FELIPE
      7. SAN BARTOLOME
      8. SANTO TOMAS
      9. SAN MATEO
      10. SANTIAGONG-BATA
      11. SAN JUDAS TADEO
      12. SAN SIMON MAKABAYAN
      13. SAN MATIAS
      14. JOSE BARSABAS JUSTO
      15. JOSE NG ARIMATEA
      16. NICODEMO
      17. SIMEON NG JERUSALEM
      18. CLEOFAS
      19. LAZARO
      20. MARIA NG BETANIA
      21. MARTA
      22. BABAENG SAMARITANA
      23. MARIA NG JERUSALEM
      24. SUSANA
      25. JUANA
      26. VERONICA
      27. MARIA JACOBE
      28. MARIA SALOME
      29. MARIA CLEOFE
      30. MARIA MAGDALENA
      31. MATAGUMPAY NA PAGPASOK SA JERUSALEM
      32. PAGBUBUHOS NG PABANGO
      33. PAGHUHUGAS NG PAA
      34. HULING HAPUNAN
      35. PANALANGIN
      36. PAGDAKIP
      37. PAGPIPIRING
      38. PAGHARAP KAY HERODES
      39. PAGDADAMIT NG MARINGAL
      40. PAGHAMPAS
      41. JESUS DISMAYADO
      42. PAGPUPUTONG NG KORONANG TINIK
      43. ECCE HOMO
      44. PAGHATOL NI PILATO
      45. PAGPAPASAN NG KRUS
      46. JESUS NAZARENO – UNANG PAGKADAPA
      47. PAGTATAGPO NINA JESUS AT MARIA
      48. PANGALAWANG PAGKADAPA
      49. PAGTULONG NI SIMON CIRENEO
      50. NANANAGHOY NA KABABIHAN NG JERUSALEM
      51. PAGKASUBASOB – IKALAWANG PAGKADAPA
      52. PAGHUHUBAD
      53. PAGPAPAKO SA KRUS
      54. PAGSASPALARAN
      55. HABILIN
      56. SENOR SANTO CRISTO SA BANAL NA KRUS
      57. PAG-ULOS NG TAGILIRAN
      58. PAGTATANGGAL SA KRUS
      59. PIETA
      60. PAGLILIBING
      61. SAN JUAN
      62. BIRHEN DE LA SOLEDAD
      63. BIRHEN DOLOROSA
      64. SENOR SANTO SEPULCRO
      65. BIRHEN DELA AURORA
      66. PAGKABUHAY

      KASAMA NA PO DYAN UNG MGA WALANG SANTO PARA SA MIYERKULES SANTO, VIERNES SANTO, AT SA ARAW NG PAGKABUHAY. SALAMAT PO. :)))

      • wala pu bang San Longino sa Bulacan?

  2. truly it”s one of a kind and i can’t help reminiscence.

  3. i thought the tres marias are mary magdalene, cleofe and salome?

  4. im impressed with the tableau of ‘The Washing of the Feet’.Very seldom you could see a complete set such as this one and it looks like it was executed to appear like old already.In Bulacan there are only two tableaux of this particular complete set ive seen so far…one in Baliwag and the other in San Miguel which i also considered excellent.

    its also nice to hear that the number of Pasos in your Parish has increased from a mere 8 to 64 in such a short time.who knows someday your parish may catch up
    with Baliwag and Pulilan – both boast with around more than 90 Pasos and still counting – someday…

  5. excited n ako s wednesday at friday…….prusisyon na!!!

    I REALLY LILY LOVE MY HOMETOWN, THE ONE AND ONLY, SAN MATEO!!!

  6. ang anda gnda

  7. wow.. ganda saanyang sanmateo lob kosya

  8. miss q n agad umilaw s prusisyon!!! iniilawan nmin ung san juan very old statue n un!!! bata p lng asawa ng pinsan q gawa n un ewan q b kung ganu n katagal??? !!! may ari kc ng san juan ung lolo ng asawa ng pinsan q eh!!! =))) 2x a year kmi umiilaw dun from wednesday and friday of holy week!!!

  9. Some of the single images like san judas tadeo, san andres and more have their own dresses on holy wednesday and on the black saturday procession especially some of them wear w/ the shade of black dresses but some are not really have a shade of black like brown and other colors =))) also some of them wear different dresses each year like maria cleofe, maria jacobe and more!!!

  10. all the pictures are amazing, the image shows real devotion to our GOD…

  11. ang ganda ganda tlg ng mga santo ntin!!! i’m a native from san mateo!!! mas maganda kung personally makikita cla! over 60 plus n images meron…

    • some of the images’ carrozas are having sound systems where they can play religious musics!

      • Baliwag started that trend…

  12. ang ganda naman ng mga
    santo jan

  13. laking san mateo poh ako and im now working here in U.A.E,,nakakatuwa nman at nkita ko ulit ung mga santo na pinoprosisyon sa bayan namiss ko tuloy ung holy week at pagsama ko sa prosisyon,,how i wish to attend again,,i really love watching it,,miss ko na umilaw together w/ m frends and my cousins,, i love you san mateo,,

  14. Randy, I just happen to browse this page and im amazed on how the holy week processions have evolved in our town. Thanks to folks like you. Been away for 10 long years already. How’s Fadcor and Mercy? Take care guys. God Bless!

  15. interesting images and icons…..

  16. DESPERATELY SEEKING SAN MATEO
    please help, i need directions going to San Mateo (Bgy Maly to be exact)… i’m from las pinas thanks in advance

    • sori po kung hindi kumpleto…punta po kayu s QC circle…to commonwealth avenue…then turn right to batasan road hanggang sa makapunta po kau s batasan bridge then 2loy 2loy hanggang sa makita nio po ang puregold san mateo then turn left dun! dire-diretso n po papuntang maly…tanungtanung n lng po s mga taga san mateo..madali nmn po clang kausap i mean kamI =))) di po ko sure d2 pero un lang po alam ko sori po kung di kumpleto =))

  17. I noticed that you mentioned a Benjamin Bautista from Bulacan. If I may, he is Basilidez G. Bautista, my cousin who is a perfect source of information on these Filipinos religious traditional rites.

  18. My family plans to see this procession on Holy Wednesday pls give time and details on where we can have a good view of the whole event. Thank you

  19. PULILAN,BULACAN HAS THE MOST CAROS & IMAGES WE WILL BE ON WORLD’S GUINNESS RECORD THIS YEAR.

    • ay tlg po!!!?

      • thats nice pero hindi naman padamihana ng paso ang tunay na diwa ng Mahal na Araw.

        • Madami ang Pulilan pero karamihan sa mga
          imagen ay iisa lang at hindi namin malaman
          ang pagkakaiba nila. May imagen ni cristo na
          half body.

          Palagay ko hindi matatalo ng Pulilan ang
          Baliwag sa dami ng tagpo at discipulo ni
          Cristo. Pareho ko po nakita ang prusisyun
          ng dalawang bayan na ito.

          • Tama nga rin po yun nagsabi hindi padamihan
            ng imagen. Importante ay solemnidad at kaugnayan
            ng mga tagpo sa passion. Nakakalungkot po isipin
            pero ang Pulilan ay marami pong tagpo na pareho.

  20. I’d love to see this on April 10 (2009). Anong oras po ito mag-iistart?

    • it’s around 7:00pm

    • mga around 7 pm! pero exactly yatang 7???

  21. natira ako sa san mateo at marami akong naging barkada pero pag umalis k sa san mateo parang hinihila ka pabalik. maganda ang san mateo lalo na ang mga tao kaso nga lang sinisira na nila ang mga bundok na isang pangunahing attraction ng lugar.

  22. Tanong ko lang po kung yung book na Cuaresma eh merong pix ng mga santo sa Pampanga? Kasi me nakita ako na ganun din ung name ng book. And san po nakakabili non? tnx, reply na lang po sa email ko: frandy16@yahoo.com

    God bless!

  23. i had an information about the Saints that are joining the procession. tnx to you, tnx to this site.

    we also hev a Saint during procession. its the Mater Dolorosa. if you can email me, il send you Her picture. i even printed a novena for Her different from that of being sold. i researched for Her.

    nway, in general tnx for giving me a background of teh other Saints during procession.

    kip in touch. pag uwi ko ng Pilipinas dis yir, id be hapi as always to join the procession.

    best regards….

  24. astig talaga kevin. I was suprise when first saw it last Holy Week.

  25. ang gaganda talaga ng santo ng mga tiga san mateo

  26. Thank you emma. I’m glad that you liked the picture.

  27. very impresive pictures. I wish I could go home and see the actual processions.
    Thank you

  28. My pleasure kahlil. thank you.

  29. Hi randy, thank you for the update. I will get a hold of copy of the souvenir program when I have the chance to drop by Nuestra Senora de Aranzazu parish.

  30. hi arthur. i am randy florencio. Our parish have this souvenir program of holy week celebration (2006 issue – i think covering 59 images at that time) which contains all the biblical roots of the images and a narration of the respective owners. It also has other articles covering the way we celebrate holy week – literally palm sunday to easter sunday, accompanied with pictures. i would be glad if i could share to you this “book” of ours. thank you.

  31. Your website is good! Keep it up. May our God bless you

  32. hi,i was amazed by all the pictures you took in this site.they are all great.mind if i can get a copy of those pictures,you can send it to me through my email indicated above.i have a fascination with saints,from pictures to prayers,everything.
    hope you can forgive my request and it is very much appreciated.
    GODBLESS you!thanks
    arthur

  33. yeah, i mow do remember. In fact i have that thick coffee table book of cuaresma that is full of pictures. Thanks so much for your time………

  34. Benjamin Bautista is an authority on Philippine festivals. I believe he hails from Bulacan from the famous and historical Bautista clan of Malolos.

    He co-authored the book Cuaresma, a rich source of information on the different events, nature, symbolism and history on the Filipino celebration of the Holy Week.

  35. As stated, your source for all the information above is Benjamin Bautista. Is He also from San Mateo and how are you able to know or meet him. thanks again.

  36. I awed at the grandness of the Holy Wednesday and Thursday processions in San Mateo Randy. I also witness the cenaculo. We are fortunate enough to be seated at the front row. The actors did a great job!

    I’m sure this annual event will be the pride of the entire town. Mabuhay to all the owners of the statues and students of Nuestra Senora de Aranzazu!. May this Catholic devotion and Filipino heritage live through.

    Thank you for giving a heads up on future events in San Mateo.

  37. I like the way you presented the holy week celebration in our Parish (Our Lady of Aranzazu in San Mateo, Rizal). I was one of those who pioneered the eventuality of how it is now celebrated – particularly the holy week processions. We, the image owners, (I own the San Pedro, Maria Jacobe & Jesus Dimayado)are very proud to say that it took us several years since 1997 – when we only had 18 images and now 64 images (2008)- before we came up to what you saw now. We could say it is a class by its own and we are proud to share it to others. Incidentally, we also have a Marian procession evry 2nd saturday of oct (arnd 38 images) and the sto. niño festival every 3rd sunday of january. For now…. thanks

  38. Sure Jeremiah. Just refer back to this page. Good luck.

  39. Ang ganda po ng pictures and texts na nakita ko. Gusto ko nag po magpaalam if pwede makakuha ng texts sa mga nabasa ko about mater dolorosa. May club po kasi kmi and may ginagawa po kaming site para po sa club namin. kung hindi man po kau pumayag ok lang po. thank you and god bless.

  40. I am glad that this article was able to bring some loving setiments to you Angelo. I’m sure events like this are closest to you since are a hermano mayor in your town.

    I wanted to feature different religious processions including the Sto. Nino. I hope I can have that featured here in the future.

    Thanks for visiting. Hope to hear from you again soon.

  41. You should have more Holy Week processions. Very nice. It evokes loving sentiments in me as I am the hermano mayor in the street where I live in Barangay Sto. Nino, Quezon City, when I can come home to the Philippines in January.

    You should feature the Sto. Nino processions also. More power.


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