|photo by Paul Badde|
|Church of San Nicola - photo by Paul Badde|
by Antonio Bini
Last Sunday May 15, the feast of Pentecost was also the third Sunday in May thus the annual feast of the Holy Face was also celebrated in Manoppello. In addition to the local population in attendance were many people from surrounding areas and from abroad. Among those participating was the Philippine Ambassador to the Vatican Mercedes Arrastia-Tuason, Fr. Daren J. Zehnle, the journalist and writer Paul Badde and Raffaella Zardoni, curator of the exhibition The Rediscovered Face and head of the Veronica Route project.
|Paul Badde with the Ambassador from the Philippines to the Vatican Mercedes Arrastia-Tuason, |
photo courtesy of Paul Badde
At the head of the procession was the company of pilgrims from Vacri, followed by that of the district of Santa Giusta di Lanciano. Then came the band and the choir of the Basilica of the Holy Face, directed by Nicholas Costantini. The celebration was enhanced by the presence of a number of Franciscan Alcantarine sisters who were in Manoppello for the centenary celebration of the establishment of their convent. Also present were a number of Capuchins together with their Provincial, Fr. Carmine Ranieri, as well as two Polish Capuchins.
|photo by Antonio Bini|
At noon, the procession reached the town center of Manoppello and the Church of San Nicola where an all night vigil of the Holy Face was held prior to the return to the Shrine the next morning.
|Procession of the Holy Face in center of town - photo by Francesca Esposito|