Santacruzan 2010 (May 22, 2010)
The Santacruzan is a popular religious festival held in many towns and cities throughout the Philippines as the highlight of the month-long celebration of Flores de Mayo during the month of May. It is usually celebrated with a parade of decorated floats and elaborately dressed characters, representing various aspects of the Virgin Mary and other figures. The festival was introduced to the country during the Spanish period and continues to be celebrated by Filipinos all over the world.
Flores, from Spanish flores or "flowers," also known as Flores de Mayo (flowers of May), Flores de Maria (flowers of Mary) or alay (offering), may refer to the whole Flower Festival celebrated in the month of May in tribute to the Virgin Mary . The Santacruzan was a novena procession remembering St. Helena's mythical finding of the cross. St. Helena was the mother of Constantine the Great. According to legends, 300 years after the death of Christ, at the age of 75, she went to Calvary to conduct a search for the Cross. After some archeological diggings at the site of the Crucifixion, she unearthed three crosses. She tested each one by making a sick servant lie on all three. The cross where the servant recovered was identified as Christ's. St. Helena's feast day falls on August 8 but the anniversary of the finding of the Cross is on May 3rd, in the Philippines, this celebration took the form of the Mexican Santa Cruz de Mayo.