Friday, April 18, 2014

The Week of Repentance


It's another time of the year wherein Catholics would do different things for their faith. The Holy Week is about remembering Jesus' passion in order to save us from our sins. We do things out of our faith, while some out of what their parents or grandparents told them.  

Quaresma and Mahal na Araw, Fasting and Abstinence, Visita Iglesia and the Way of the Cross, Penitensya and Panata. These words are commonly heard during this time of the year but is usually interchanged and some don't even know the true meaning of it. 

1. Quaresma and Mahal na Araw
Quaresma, also known as "Lent", is a 40-day season commemorating Jesus' fast in the desert wherein he was being tempted by Satan. Ash Wednesday marks the start of the Lenten season and ends on Easter Sunday.  Mahal na Araw, also known as "Semana Santa", is the last week of Lent embarked by Palm Sunday and concludes on Easter Sunday. 

2. Fasting and Abstinence
Fasting is to diminish one's food intake while Abstinence is to abnegate something good, just as Catholics avoid to eat meat every Friday once Lent began and on the entire duration of the Holy Week but only until Black Saturday. 

3. Visita Iglesia and the Way of the Cross
Visita Iglesia is the visitation of the at least seven churches and praying on the exposed Blessed Sacrament on each. The Way of the Cross depicts Jesus' passion and praying on each station which can be done on one church only or during the Visita Iglesia

4. Penitensya and Panata
Penitensya, from the root word "penance", is done when a person voluntarily punishes oneself. It can be done by hitting oneself on the back, carrying their own cross, or even being nailed on the cross itself. It can also be done in less harmful ways for as long as it is to show how sorry a person is to God for their sins, believing that they will be redeemed to God through this. Penitensya is a kind of panata. Panata is a religious vow or personal commitment to God which can be done in any way a person desires for as long as it is pleasing in the eyes of God. The person also decides how long they will do their panata. 

This is how I understood them and if these words are still not clear to you, you can just google them.

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