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    Posted April 20, 2014 by
    Bohol, Philippines
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    The burning of Judas Iscariot

    Like other Catholics, Filipinos marked the Resurrection of Jesus Christ with a festive note, attending Easter processions and masses.

    In my many years of watching Easter Day celebration, it was my first time to see a different ritual in the town of Baclayon, Bohol, Philippines, where people did burning of Judas.

    The burning of Judas is an Easter-time ritual in many Orthodox and Catholic Christian communities, where an effigy of Judas Iscariot is burned.

    The re-enactment of the resurrection involved Angel Gabriel (in the Philippines, a male kid would portray as Gabriel who has a nice voice to sing the Latin psalm “Una Sabatorum” and “Regina Coeli” who descended from heaven to give the good news of Jesus’ resurrection. This practice is observed not only in the Philippines but also in other Christian communities with much reverence and adoration.

    The angel had to remove the mourning veil from Virgin Mary...and after Virgin Mary and the resurrected Christ would meet, people would burn the effigy of Judas Iscariot.

    I’d read that in many parts of Latin America this practice is a symbol of ridding one's self of evil and beginning a new year in spiritual purity. But the church said it’s not an official part of Easter liturgical cycle.

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