The police and local government unit in Antipolo City are expecting the participation of some 3.5 million individuals in the traditional ‘’Alay Lakad” (Penitential Walk) from Metro Manila and other parts outside the province to Antipolo City’s International Shrine of the Our Lady of Peace and Good Voyage on Holy Thursday and Good Friday.
The “Alay Lakad” is a Lenten activity that happens every Holy Thursday and Good Friday with people coming from Quiapo Church and other parts of Metro Manila and nearby towns of Rizal Province walking, some even barefoot, towards the Antipolo Cathedral as part of their penitential vow.
Lt. Col. June Paolo Abrazado, chief of the Antipolo Police Station told Manila Bulletin that authorities are expecting the convergence of some 3.5 million people on Holy Thursday and Good Friday.
The office of Mayor Casimiro “Junjun” Ynares, III said at least 12 public assistance centers will be set up to assist the participants including emergency situations.
The command posts are located in the following areas:
1. Antipolo City Hall Grounds (Parking Area) -
Incident Command Post
2. Sumulong Park - Central Command Post
3. Beverly Hills
4. HAMAKA Park
5. Ninoy Aquino Park
6. Pinagmisahan/White Cross
7. Old Prutasan/Robinson
9. Licos Park
10. Maia Alta/Crown Asia, MLQ Extension
11. Sumulong/Olalia Road
12. Masinag Intersection
Local authorities are expecting the number of participants in this year’s penitential walk to be bigger than last year with the easing of Covid-19 restrictions.
The local government is reminding the public to observe the solemnity of the Lenten activity and urged the participants to refrain from bringing any kind of deadly weapon including pointed instruments, illegal drugs, or liquor.
Also prohibited are making noise, playing loud music, indiscriminate throwing of trash, and unauthorized operation of drones.
The local government also urged the penitential walk participants to follow the ‘4Ms’ -- “Mapayapa” (Orderly/Peaceful), “Mataimtim” (Solemn), “Malinis” (Clean), and “Maingat” (Safe) -- as their guide in the observance of the Lenten activity.
The trekking of people to Antipolo City usually starts in the afternoon of Maundy Thursday right after the vehicle carrying the pilgrim image of the Nuestra Senora Dela Paz Y Buenviaje leaves Quiapo Church in Manila following a Holy Mass.
Along the path of the Alay Lakad, vendors will be selling all kinds of refreshments and snacks.
There are also individuals and families whose annual vow is to give free drinking water to the penitential walk participants.
The participants, upon reaching the Antipolo Cathedral, now known as the International Shrine of the Our Lady of Peace and Good Voyage, would utter a short silent prayer or make wish in front of the altar before they toss some coins or paper bills towards the altar as their donation.
After leaving the cathedral, most of the penitential trekkers would stay for a while on vacant pavements or sidewalks in the vicinity of the shrine to take a brief rest before heading home, usually early morning of Good Friday.