that is done for nine consecutive days
beginning on December 16
up to December 24 every year
in anticipation of the birth of the Holy Child Jesus.
with the traditional belief
that attending the masses for nine consecutive days
will have prayers granted.
In Cebu City, Philippines
the center of Catholic devotion to the religion
is the Santo Niño Church or
The Basilica Minore Del Santo Niño
which gathers the most number of devotees
attending the Misa De Gallo.
The masses begin at 4:00 or 4:30 AM
while some parishes already hold
anticipated masses the night before.
Many devotees attend the masses the whole nine days
with the first day having the most number of people.
In the Basilica Minore del Santo Niño,
the 1st day gathered the most number of devotees
that easily filled up the whole pilgrim center
and even overflowed to the streets.
On the 2nd day,
the place was filled up
but not as fast as the 1st day
maybe because it was not that easy for some
to wake up so much earlier for two consecutive days.
On the 3rd day,
there were still a lot of devotees
but took more time for the place to fill up.
the rain was a big mess for everyone
that the place was not filled up,
but still the crowd was huge.
On the 5th day,
there were more devotees
than on the 4th day,
and the weather was finer.
The crowd filled up the place
but not as fast as the 1st day.
On the 6th day,
there was still a huge number of devotees
that filled up the bleachers
but the ground had lots of empty spaces.
The 7th day and 8th day,
the crowd was as huge as the 6th day,
and only the bleachers were full.
The ground had lots of empty spaces
to be filled up still.
And on the last and final day of the Novena Mass,
the 9th day,
there was some rain even before it started,
and the bleachers and the ground had lots of empty spaces.
But it was still a huge crowd of devotees
who held on to their Catholic devotion.