Meanwhile, in Medina

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By Nef Luczon


Monday, April 21, 2014

IT'S simply fascinating to think that Medina can be of Islamic and Christian significance.

In the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, Medina is the second holiest city after Mecca since it is the burial place of Prophet Muhammad (Peace be Upon Him). It is derived from the Arabic word “Madinah” which means “city.”

Meanwhile, in the other Medina, which is a humble town situated in Misamis Oriental province in Mindanao, that has become a testament of Christian faith especially during Holy Week, they re-enact the “Passion of Christ” to commemorate the crucifixion of Jesus Christ (Isa [PBUH], as his name in Islam and one of the most beloved Messengers of Allah [SWT]).


The townspeople of Medina, Misamis Oriental named it “Hinuklog” which means “reflections,” and every Holy Week of the year, the major landmarks of the town will be transformed into a stage and there, we will witness the last hours of Jesus according to the Holy Bible.

For the devoted Catholics, Medina is becoming one of the main destinations outside Cagayan de Oro City. If El Salvador City has the Divine Mercy shrine in the west of Misamis Oriental province, Medina is on the east.

Since I am not a Catholic, I only heard stories of “Senakulo” or “Passion” reenactments being performed on stages. Last week in Medina, Misamis Oriental, it was my first time to witness one, and it was also a first time to see the town’s main areas transformed into a big stage for a night and a day.

The whole event was organized by the Hinuklog Council whose officers and members are composed of the people from the different sectors of the town, not just the local government units but including in the business and other private sectors. And every year it is said that visitors are growing in number just to witness the event every year.

Hinuklog can be a must-see event every year, given the proper handling and organizing of the whole affair. Even to the actors who portrayed the roles noticeably gave their all best and sincerity. Their performances alone should be given a chance to be seen by a wider audience not just for the locals in Medina, Misamis Oriental.

Mindanao indeed has become a very diverse island and remains promising even to the cultural and religious exercise, after centuries it has molded unique stories to tell and to preserve for the next generations to understand.

Medina, Misamis Oriental has already contributed to the cultural diversity of Mindanao through Hinuklog, adding to the vibrant and peculiar practice of Filipino Catholicism in the country.


My personal thanks to the Hinuklog Council, especially to Ms. Mylene Huerto and Fresh Fruits Ingredients, Inc., for the experience and re-exploring Medina town in a new perspective and to Ms Judy Aclan and Jason of Department of Trade and Industry – Misamis Oriental province for sharing fresh and potential stories to pursue in coming up new documentary ideas. To all their patience and assistance during the duration of our stay, thank you very much.

And to Edu Doremon, who portrayed as Jesus Christ for Hinuklog for five years now, thank you for the conversations.

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Published in the Sun.Star Cagayan de Oro newspaper on April 21, 2014.


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