IT’S that time of year again when devout Catholics visit several churches to pray, a practice known by Filipinos as “Visita Iglesia (church visit.)”
Those who observe this tradition, carried out during Holy Week, usually visit seven churches or more.
To promote this religious practice, the city of Marikina launched Bisikleta Iglesia 2016 to be held on Maundy Thursday starting at 5:30 a.m. at the Freedom Park.
Bisikleta Iglesia, which is part of the city’s Christian Festival, aims to encourage bike enthusiasts to visit various Catholic churches around Marikina City.
Bisikleta is the Filipino word for bicycle.
Under the program, devotees will use bicycles in visiting major churches in the city.
These churches are Saint Paul of the Cross Parish, Our Lady of Saint Gabriel of Sorrows Parish, Holy Family Parish, Immaculate Conception Parish, San Isidro Labrador Chapel (Jesus dela Peña Chapel), San Antonio de Padua Parish and Diocesan Shrine of the Our Lady of the Abandoned.
Members of the Eastern Police District (EPD) will be among those who will pedal their way to various churches.
According to the EPD director, Chief Supt. Elmer Jamias, the policemen will join bicycle enthusiasts who will visit the churches in the Metro Manila cities of San Juan, Mandaluyong, Pasig and Marikina.
Among the churches that will be visited by the policemen are Camp Crame Chapel, Mary the Queen, Greenhills Chapel, Sanctuario del Santo Cristo Church, Saint John the Baptist, Barangay West Crame Chapel, Little Baguio Chapel, Barangay San Perfecto Chapel and many others.
Jamias said the EPD will put up complaint desks near the entrance of churches for churchgoers who may need police assistance.
Registration for the Bisikleta Iglesia is free.
Those interested can call the City Tourism, Culture and the Arts Office at 646-2915 from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.
The first 100 individuals to register will receive limited edition Bisikleta Iglesia shirts, prayer booklets and rosaries.