Devoted Catholics Nailed To Crosses To Celebrate Good Friday

A group of devoted Catholics have been crucified to mark Good Friday.

The tradition takes place in the Philippines every year and sees hoards of believers nailed to wooden crosses - even though the church does not agree with it.

One of those, Ruben Enaje, has been nailed to a cross every year for the last three decades, with this being his 33rd time.

The 58-year-old takes on the role of Jesus Christ, portraying his death at the mock Calvary in San Pedro Cutud village in Pampanga province.

Ruben Enaje, was 'crucified' for the 33rd year in a row. Credit: PA
Ruben Enaje, was 'crucified' for the 33rd year in a row. Credit: PA

Actors taking part in the reconstruction, drove four-inch nails through his hands and feet, before raising him up on a wooden cross for five minutes.

Speaking to reporters ahead of the sacred day, Enaje said this is how he finds 'solace'.

He said: "More than penance, this is a solace for me. I feel relieved and happy after every crucifixion because I know that I said my prayers in the best way I can.

Ruben Enaje is crucified during the celebration in 2015. Credit: PA
Ruben Enaje is crucified during the celebration in 2015. Credit: PA

"As I carry the cross and be nailed on it, all I do is keep praying, ask for forgiveness and give thanks for all the blessings I have received for the whole year, and ask for another bountiful year."

However, despite having put his body on the line for more than three decades in the name of his faith, Enaje admits he cannot do it forever.

He added: "I am turning 59 years old this coming July. I am getting old and my body can barely handle the physical pain of my penance.

The 58-year-old was crucified for the 33rd time, this year. Credit: Getty
The 58-year-old was crucified for the 33rd time, this year. Credit: Getty

"But I have to consider our village officials. They told me that they still cannot find somebody who can replace me for the role of 'Kristo'.

"Hopefully we can find my replacement soon because as much as I want to do this, I cannot promise until when my body can take the physical pain."

Devotees take part in the procession in 2017. Credit: PA
Devotees take part in the procession in 2017. Credit: PA

Nine people took part n the extreme act of religious penitence, while dozens of others whipped themselves and carried the large crosses.

Some of the men, who had their faces covered and hands tied to the cross, walked for hours in the baking heat along a main road, around 50 miles from the capital city of Manila.

Other who take part, used bamboo flails to slash their backs.

Job Christian Ong, 16, carried on the family tradition, taking over from his brother, and said he felt 'cleansed'.

He said: "It is difficult yet rewarding."

Featured Image Credit: PA

Dominic Smithers

Dominic graduated from the University of Leeds with a degree in French and History. Like you, Dom has often questioned how much use a second language has been. Well, after stints working at the Manchester Evening News, the Accrington Observer and the Macclesfield Express, along with never setting foot in France, he realised the answer is surprisingly little. But I guess, c'est la vie. Contact us at [email protected]

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