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The disruption of life on Earth because of the pandemic has not spared even the celebration of the feast of Senyor Sto. Niño, the Holy Child Jesus.

The feast would have kicked of the commemoration of the first circumnavigation of the world some 500 years ago. It also marks the Christianization of the Philippines, perhaps even South East Asia.

We all know, the conquistador Ferdinand Magellan arrived in Cebu last 1521 with the oldest religious relic that is still venerated today, Senyor Sto. Niño.

However, safety considerations because of Covid-19 disrupted even the conduct of the feast of the Senyor. The original plans cancelling most of feast’s traditional activities, including the Holy Procession on the third Saturday of January.

What would have happened were virtual showdowns of contingents dancing the Sinulog. This would have been the virtual alternative to the Grand Sinulog Parade.

But concerns for health and safety of the local population prompted more drastic measures. The gatherings were potential super-spreader events of the coronavirus. The planned virtual showdowns were cancelled. The religious nine-day novenas and masses, which initially were physically held at the Basilica del Santo Niño, became virtual events.

But while the physical activities were cancelled, the religious fervor remained. Calls of Pit Senyor (Sangpit sa Senyor or our plea to the Senyor) reverberated in Cebu and beyond.

Our common call on the Child Jesus is recovery from the pandemic.