In the island province of Marinduque in the Philippines, women “Roman soldiers” have always been part of those who “arrested” Jesus on Good Friday in a festival dubbed “Moriones.”
Participation in the Lenten festival has become a religious vow for residents — men and women.
The festival gathers residents of all ages and walks of life on a single stage where they fulfill the vow of a Roman soldier, Longinus, who supposedly witnessed the resurrection of the Lord.
“Being a man or a woman should not be a requirement to be a Morion,” said Princess Murillo, 18, who has been wearing the Morion garb since she was 12.
The festival supposedly originated in the town of Mogpog after a Catholic priest, Father Dionisio Santiago, organized a group of performers to depict the passion and death of Jesus. (Photos by Basilio Sepe)