Not even the most contagious of all viruses can stop true love! This is what the people of Bacolod City witnessed last Thursday, as 220 couples got married in what has been dubbed as a “masked” wedding.
Donning face masks as protection against the threat of COVID-19, the couples got married on 20th February 2020 or 02-20-2020, a date which — according to astrology — is the best date to tie the knot. The wedding ceremony was held at the Bacolod City Government Centre and officiated by Mayor Evelio Leonardia.
Pinoy Couples Get Married on “Lucky” Date Despite Virus Scare
The event, titled “Kasalan ng Bayan: 220 on 02-20-2020,” began late afternoon and ended early evening. “This is a mass wedding like no other because of its unique date, and for the first time ever couples have to wear masks as a precaution,” Mayor Leonardia said, as cited by the Philippine News Agency.
According to the mayor, the event proves that “love conquers all,” because none of the couples hesitated to participate, despite the threat of the novel coronavirus. He also mentioned that the Department of Health (DOH) had granted them permission to hold the mass wedding.
As part of health protocols, personnel from the Bacolod City Health Office (CHO) distributed face masks during the event. The couples were also asked to accomplish health declaration forms, which determined their health status and travel history for the past 14 days.
“A family starts with the couple,” Mayor Leonardia stated. “If we have a strong family, we have a strong society, and a strong city.” Notably, the mayor’s administration has been conducting a mass wedding every year to institutionalize marriage among the people of Bacolod.
Masks On First, Then Kiss the Bride
After the matrimonial rites, the couples kissed with their face masks on — drawing much laughter from among the newlyweds themselves, as well as from the people who watched the event.
During the cutting of the cake and wine toast ceremony, the newlyweds were represented by the oldest couple in the room — Rolly Glenn de la Cruz, 60 years old, and Jennifer Mijares, 62 years old. The couple has been together since 1979, and have two children who are now in their 30’s.
Together with the city government, Vice Mayor El Cid Familiaran and Councilor Al Victor Espino co-sponsored the event. Meanwhile, the head of Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA) – Negros Occidental, Luis Gonzales, gave an inspirational message, and Lone District Representative Greg Gasataya imparted some words of counsel to the newlywed couples.
Check out this video featuring a scene from the “masked” wedding held in Bacolod City last week, as shared by the Philippine News Agency on Facebook: