Revisiting the 46th Live Via Crucis in Cavite City

After three years of hiatus due to COVID19 Pandemic, the Live Via Crucis in Cavite City was held successfully last month. This yearly lent tradition in Cavite city was last celebrated in 2019 until the pandemic hit the country, resulting to the postponement of the event for three consecutive years. Now that everything is going back to normal, the committee behind the Live Via Crucis finally pushed through.
For those who are not yet aware, the parish of San Roque (recently declared as the Diocesan Shrine of Our Lady of Porta Vaga) is annually organizing a cultural and spiritual Lenten tradition known as the “Live Via Crucis”. As the term suggests, it is passion play or a “senakulo” that retells the passion  of Jesus Christ from his trial, suffering, death up to his Resurrection. All performances are done Live or real-time where spectators can follow the events from one station to another. Unlike a typical play, Live Via Crucis in Cavite City is not performed on a single stage. Instead,  the stations of the cross will take place in various locations in Cavite City.

This annual passion play has been performed and celebrated since 1974 and has become a tradition to the people of Cavite City. The participants on this play are not professional actors but residents of Cavite City who went through series of training and rehearsals to portray their respective roles. This is not a performance but a way to showcase their vows and devotion.

Written by Antonio Galura under the direction of Mr Larry O Sta Elena, Leo Ponseca and Aldous Guiao and under the supervision of their Chairman Danny Guiao and Gae Lourd (Vice Chairman) the much awaited 46th Live Via Crucis in Cavite City was held triumphantly.

The audience were taken to 14 different “Way of the Cross” stations from the Last Supper to the Resurrection. This year also introduced new sets. Instead of concluding the play back to the church, the finale was held in Montano Hall Oval and Grandstand. It is interesting to note that this was actually the previous location of the Calvary before they decided to move it inside the church.

This year also introduced both new and old casts. For instance, the actor who played Jesus (John John Bass) was the same guy who played same role prior to the 2019 Live Via Crucis. The Live Via Crucis was traditionally done every Holy Tuesday. The event started with a Special mass presided by this year’s Spiritual director and the current Parish priest of San Roque Church – Rev. Fr. Ruben Cron.  The play was composed of more than 300 actors and technical team who were in charged of the sound and light system.

Without any further ado, here are some stills from the 46th Live Via Crucis in Cavite City

The First Station: The Last Supper
2023-05-01_08-37-29The Washing of the Feet
“If I then, your Lord and Teacher, have washed your feet, you also ought to wash one another’s feet.” John 13:14

The betrayal of Judas
Second Station: The Agony of Jesus in the Garden of Gethsemane. “Jesus was accompanied by the Apostles Peter, John and James, whom he asked to stay awake and pray. He moved “a stone’s throw away” from them, where He felt overwhelming sadness and anguish”
_DSC0675TThe devil tempting Jesus
Jesus was also confronted by an Angel while praying
Third Station: Jesus Before the Sanhedrin
_DSC0745TThe denial of Peter
Jesus was brought to Pontius Pilate by the Sanhedrin
Pilate handed Jesus over to Herod Antipas but Jesus was just mocked by him and he sent Jesus back to Pilate for the trial.
Matthew 27:24 When Pilate saw that he was getting nowhere, but that instead an uproar was starting, he took water and washed his hands in front of the crowd. “I am innocent of this man’s blood,” he said. “It is your responsibility!”
The Fourth Station: Jesus was crowned with thorns
Judas turning over the 30 silver coins to the priests and persuade them not to condemn Jesus to death
The fifth Station : Jesus Receives His Cross
Sixth Station : Jesus Falls under the weight of the cross
Seventh Station: Simon of Cyrene carries the cross of Jesus
Eight Station: Jesus meets the pious Women of Jerusalem
Ninth Station: Jesus is nailed to the cross
Tenth Station: Jesus promises Heaven to the Repentant Thief
Eleventh Station : Mary and John at the foot of the cross
Twelfth Station : Jesus Dies on the cross
Thirteenth Station: Jesus is laid in the tomb. This scene depicts the La Pieta where the Virgin Mary cradles the dead body of Jesus.
Mary weeping over the dead body of Jesus
_DSC1182tThe angel announced to Mary Magdalene and other women that Jesus has risen
The Last Station : Jesus rises from the death

It was indeed a spiritually enlightening performance from the cast. Be mindful that the traditional Live Via Crucis are not performed to entertain the audience but to remind people the suffering and passion of Jesus Christ. It was done to remind us all that Jesus sacrificed His self to save us from our sins.

The annual Live Via Crucis is just a proof of the undying and overwhelming devotion of the Caviteños. The artists and everyone behind this massive production are not paid. They are doing this as their vows and to show their devotion.

Feel free to check the previous Live Via Crucis Articles here

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