Thousands of devotees joined the processions in the province of Bulacan on Thursday, June 23, a day before the feast of St. John the Baptist.
During the procession marking the 450th town fiesta of Calumpit, devotees were seen singing, dancing and dousing water to “baptize” passersby in honor of the saint.
Bearing the theme “Apo John: The light of truth towards the straight path,” the procession started at 6 a.m. from St. John the Baptist Church to Barangay Frances. It passed through Barangay Caniogan, then straight up to the parish church where a Holy Mass was held at 7:30 a.m.
A fluvial procession known as “Libad Festival” was held in Calumpit river at 8:30 a.m. People aged 13 years old and above, who know how to swim, were allowed to take part in the procession.
Lt. Col. Wendel T. Arinas, acting chief of police, personally led the policemen in securing the festival. He assigned a cop in every boat that participated in the fluvial procession.
In Barangay San Juan in the City of Malolos, two sets of Bulacan brass band led the procession also in honor of St. Jhon the Baptist. One of the mobile sound systems used in the event was donated by the Vice Mayor-elect Miguel “Migs” Tengco Bautista for the youths of San Juan village.
At exactly 2:30 p.m., fiesta hermano mayor Vicente “Enteng” Borlongan paraded the statue of St. John the Baptist and later picked up the relic of the Blessed Virgin Mary in the house of hermana mayora Donna Fonbuena in Rufina Subdivision.
Lt. Col. Ferdinand Germino, Malolos City police chief, also deployed policemen in the area to ensure the safety of the people who participated in the religious activity that ended at 5:00 p.m.