The 3rd Sunday of January creates an exciting call to every Cebuano. As it approaches, the streets of Cebu seem to get a little bit busier (even busier than Christmas), public places play festive tunes where your subconscious sings with the beat of the Sinulog theme. You complain that there is no other thing you can hear but you mum the words anyway.
Yes, it’s Sinulog. It’s time to shagit ug kusog-- Pit Senyor! Pit Senyor!
Sinulog is the feast of the Child Jesus, Sr. Sto. Nino. Miracles have been claimed connected to the devotion and the mercy of Cebu City’s patron. No wonder novenas and processions are so full and crowded, amidst traffic, amidst rain, amidst possible threats of terrorism. Such is the Cebuano faith. When you raise your hands together with the multitudes singing Bato Balani sa Gugma, you can’t help but tear up and somehow, your faith is notched up to higher levels.
But what is Sinulog, really? And what does the Sto. Nino mean to each and every one of you?
There were debates if the Sto. Nino is a patron saint or a God.
For me, Sinulog or the feast of the Child King is more than the statue, more than the prayer novenas and more than lighting up of a million candles for your intercessions. Sinulog is you, Sinulog is me. For Sinulog lives in each and every one of us. It reminds us that faith and devotion to a Being much more superior and divine than any other. And I am not just talking about faith and religion. Sr. Sto Nino for me is a reminder that each and every one of us has the capacity to give out faith like that of a child.
Have you ever witnessed a child being thrown up in the air and the parent or adult catches the child? It is very heartwarming to see a child laugh with glee that he/she is thrown only to be picked up by loving arms. Some would even demand more throws in the air! I say, such pure surrender! Such trust!
Imagine if you are that child. If you are thrown in the air right now without any assurance other than the mere thought that the one who threw you will also be the one to catch you, would you still laugh with glee? I’m sure you would say, “Bahala ka diha uy, ikaw lang
! (No way, you do it yourself!) But don’t you think that like any other parent, God also throws us up in the air and asks us to trust Him that He will never allow His children to fall?
Thrown in the air would mean trials, problems, inexplicable situations and other catastrophies in life. Thrown in the air is when everything seems to go wrong and you don't know if there is any way things will turn out right. Thrown in the air is that feeling when you feel that you are alone and you are breaking into pieces because there is no one there to understand or to catch you at your lowest, right when you are about to fall...
Sad thing about life is as we grow up, we also lose our trust in others, in our own selves and most of all in God. We have lost that unique faith of just believing that somehow, while it is raining today, it won't be raining forever. We don’t know that when we are thrown in the air, we need to have faith in Him, give utmost trust without any questions whatsoever. Because like any parent, God will never leave us uncaught, He will never leave us to fall. God asks us to trust Him with a faith like that of a child.
I would like to believe that while I won’t be in the streets this year for the Sinulog celebration as I am thrown in the air at this point, I am one in faith with the multitudes of believers, raising their hands up in the air, singing Bato Balani sa Gugma
--- just like little children, raising their hands to God, giving Him the power to direct us right back to His loving arms.
Credits: Lito Inso
I wish you and every one reading this faith, hope and trust, like that of a child.
Pit Senyor from all of us here at iSTORYA.NET!