Several devoted Catholics have volunteered to get crucified amid Good Friday celebrations in an attempt to wash away their sins.
WARNING: GRAPHIC CONTENT AHEAD
The controversial practice takes place in San Pedro Cutud village, Pampanga province, The Philippines, on a yearly basis.
Despite the church condemning such acts, hoards of believers gather to observe the depiction of Jesus’ crucifixion and death.
One of the men who volunteered to be nailed on a wooden cross this year was 58-year-old Ruben Enaje who participated in the practice for the 33rd time.
Actors participating in the mock Calvary placed the men on the wooden crosses before driving 4-inch nails through their feet and palms.
“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,” the 58-year-old said.
“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.”
Despite Ruben’s joy in playing a part in the practice that was labeled as gruesome by many fellow believers, the 58-year-old admitted he will soon have to ‘retire.’
“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 devotee said.
“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.”
While only nine people participated in the extreme reenactment, hundreds of devotees were seen occupying the streets and whipping themselves or carrying crosses on Good Friday.
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