The Pen

Self-Flagellations and Mock Crucifixions Continues Among Roman Catholic Devotees on Good Friday

The Good Friday practice of self-flagellation and mock crucifixions continues north of Manila, Philippines. Roman Catholic devotees, many with face covered, barefoot and bloodied, walked in an annual tradition among devotees beating themselves in a reactment of the flogging and suffering of Jesus Christ.

Thousands flock to witness volunteers subjecting themselves to flogging, self-flagellation, and crucifixion as acts of penance.

Many return year after year to participate in the Roman Catholic tradition. Among them were Ruben Enaje, 59, who was nailed to the cross for the 33rd time and Mary Jane Sazon, who also marked her 16th time on the cross.

Ruben Enaje, 58, after he is nailed to a cross on Good Friday in in gratitude for surviving a fall.
Mary Jane Sazon was nailed to a cross because she believes her prayers are answered and keeps her from illness.

This year one village included a play re-enacting the trial, flogging, and crucifixion of Jesus Christ.

Watch video below:

Although the Roman Catholic Church has spoken against such displays stating religious fervor is best served through prayer and fasting.

Father Jerome Secillano of the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines said:

The crucifixion and death of Jesus are more than enough to redeem humanity from the effects of sins. They are once in a lifetime events that need not be repeated. Holy Week … is not the time to showcase man’s propensity for entertainment and Pharisaical tendencies,

It’s a rather interesting statement made Father Secillano considering Roman Catholicism teaches the sacrament of the Eucharist (repeated in every Mass) is to, “be offered as a sacrifice commemorating and renewing for all time the sacrifice of the cross,” and:

the bread and wine become the body, soul, blood and divinity of Jesus Christ through a process called transubstantiation, which literally means that the very substance of which the bread and wine are composed changes into something different entirely; namely, the literal body and blood of Christ.

Therefore, it should come as no surprise that some Roman Catholic devotees take it upon themselves to engage in such practices believing they must participate in the sufferings and crucifixion of Jesus Christ over and over and over again. Catholic Priests re-sacrifice Jesus Christ over and over and over again with every mass they conduct in the Roman Catholic practice of the sacrament of the Eucharist.

These Roman Catholic devotees have just taken it into their hands.

However, what does sacred writ say about the crucifixion of Jesus Christ over 2000 years ago that we are humbly and gratefully mindful on Good Friday?

11 And every priest stands daily at his service, offering repeatedly the same sacrifices, which can never take away sins. 12 But when Christ[b] had offered for all time a single sacrifice for sins, he sat down at the right hand of God, 13 waiting from that time until his enemies should be made a footstool for his feet. 14 For by a single offering he has perfected for all time those who are being sanctified.

Hebrews 10:11-14