Tacloban, Basey staged ‘Pre-Balyu-an’ Rites
TACLOBAN CITY (CIO) – Devotees of Sto. Nino de Tacloban made the 8-kilometer journey to Basey Town for the yearly Pre-Balyuan Rites on Tuesday, June 18, 2019. The event which is considered a prelude to the Balyuan Rites happening this June 20 memorializes the historical swapping of Sto. Niño images between Tacloban and the Samar town.
The convoy which departed for Basey, 8:00 am featured the revered image of the El Teniente – a replica of the Santo Nino de Tacloban, devotees of the Holy Child and Officials and employees of the City Government.
Upon arrival at Brgy. Buscada in Basey the faithful and the town’s Cultural Performers greeted the delegation from Tacloban with ritual performance.
A Holy Mass was then celebrated at the Old Buscada Church attended by Tacloban City Government Officials and Basey Mayor Igmedio Junjie Ponferrada
On June 20, the image of El Teniente will be returned to Tacloban through a fluvial procession for the Balyu-an Rites at the Balyu-an Amphitheater.
“Balyu-an” (or exchange) is a religious tradition that can be traced back to the time when Tacloban, then named Kankabatok was but a mere Sitio of Basey Town. Kankabatok has grown into a prosperous settlement, that the Spanish Parish Priest of Basey arranged an exchange of Sto. Nino images. Kankabatok received a bigger and more beautiful image while Buscada had a smaller image from Kankabatok. Every year, the local government units of Tacloban and Basey continue the ritual in celebration of their shared history and filial devotion to the Holy Child. –
The 45th Balyu-an rites will signal the start of the nine-day novena mass for the City’s 130th Fiesta Celebration.- H. J. Roca/CIO
📸: M. Espina and D. Abarquez/CIO