The drum and bugle corp was playing a familiar tune, that of the Sinulog beat in Cebu as Sto. Niño devotees massed, waved their hands and danced while chanting Viva Pit Señor! But I wasn’t in my home province. Far from it. I was infront of the San Jose Church of Iloilo City for the Dinagyang religious sadsad.
Sadsad is a form of religious devotion, a prayer dancing in honor of the Sto. Niño where devotees pray and offer their intentions. It can go on for an hour or two and many bring their religious icons. It is also performed in Kalibo during the Ati-Atihan Festival where the Sto. Niño is also venerated.
The trumpets blared as vivas were being chanted. Hands waving and hips gyrating. In between these movements, the faith of the Ilonggos and Sto. Niño devotees was just palpable, hung heavily on the air. I said my own prayers, I offered my own supplications, I asked for my own intentions and, hope that the Sto. Niño would grant them.
The Dinagyang religious sadsad is held every Saturday night in front of the San Jose Church in Iloilo City, on the eve of the Dinagyang Festival street dancing proper held on the fourth Sunday of January. This religious devotion is also done in Kalibo during the Ati-atihan Festival. Do check the schedules.