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What they said about Kalibo Ati-Atihan

 

"For centuries, this simple but profound devotion to the Holy Child, has gatheredKaliboatiatihan-40 and united God’s people in the  Philippines in their journey toward an intensified faith, hope, and love. The Child from Nazareth never ceases to remind them of their identity, as brothers and sisters of the Lord, sharing the faith, living the Gospel, and being inspired by the rich religious and cultural traditions that they have received from their forebears.

May the Senior Sto. Nino continue to transform the Aklanons, and all who join them in giving homage to the Lord, to be more like Him, if whom the Father is well pleased. May He mould him to become his true disciples.  In the name of the Holy Father Pope Benedict XVI, I greet and bless all of you.” – Apostolic Nuncio to the Philippines His Excellency Archbishop Guiseppe Pinto

 

 

Kaliboatiatihan-41“Kasafi will surely be faithful to the true spirit of the Sto.  Nino Ati-Atihan festival, … joy and merriment and faith and love of God. The Sto. Nino Ati-Atihan festival is both merrymaking and a pilgrimage.

In fact, the soul of this festival – what gives meaning to this festival – is devotion to the Sto. Nino, to ask favors from Him, and to express our love for Him.” – Bishop of Antipolo Gabriel V. Reyes, D.D. (Formerly Bishop of Kalibo)

 

 

 “This festival is a unique facet of a town that is renowned among our people for being a Kaliboatiatihan-42vibrant, colorful community. I am pleased with the sense of pride with which you regard your heritage which in turn forms a dynamic components of our unique Filipino culture.

Your celebration also coincides with this era of change and reform, begun by our own citizenry with the mandate they have given our administration to set-up the country on the straight and righteous path to stability and prosperity. Let us then take this occasion as well to ponder our formidable but galvanizing task to rebuild our nation and restore its glory.” – President Benigno S. Aquino III

 

 Kaliboatiatihan-43“For its humble origins as a reconciliation feast between the Bornean datus and first settlers of Panay, the Atis, the Ati-Atihan has now become one of the biggest and colorful devotions to the Child Jesus, or the Santo Nino.

As we celebrate this joyous feast, may we always remember to honor the grace that the Almighty bestows on us. May we also keep in mind the goodness the Atis shared with the Datus, which allowed them refuge in time of great distress.

It is also my hope that the feast of the Child Jesus will further foster community building in all of us and cultivate solidarity and camaraderie among our countrymen.” – Vice President Jejomar C. Binay

 

“The Kalibo Ati-Atihan Festival is easily one of the biggest attractions in the country,
Kaliboatiatihan-44as it draws many foreigners as well as local visitors to the town every year. There is no doubt that it has become a major tourist event because it is a showcase of pride in our own culture and celebration of the Filipino spirit.

But amid the festivities and the merrymaking, let us not forget that Ati-Atihan is at bottom a religious feast in honor of the Sto. Nino. Celebrations such as this should be an occasion to strengthen our faith in Divine Providence and to express our gratitude for the blessing has your municipality received in the past.” – Senate President Juan Ponce Enrile

 

 

Kaliboatiatihan-45“We in the House of Representatives recognize the Ati-Atihan festival as a testament to the rich and diverse cultural heritage of the Filipino people. We commend the Kasafi for keeping this tradition alive in a time of rapid modernity and constant change.

Further, the promotion of the festival boasts the thriving tourism sector in the province. Tourism is considered as one of Aklan’s major drivers for economic growth. Both the province’s natural and cultural treasures – Boracay Island and the Ati-Atihan festival – provide economic opportunities to the people of Aklan.

We are confident that Kasafi’s efforts to enrich the Ati-Atihan festival will increase economic activity in the province as it strives towards progress and development.” – House Speaker Feliciano Belmonte, Jr.

 

(Taken from Kasafi Ati-Atihan Souvenir Program)