Authors: Joaquin Angelo Pineda, Angelo Oyi De Vera, Maria Jaqueline Godoy, Martina Jalen Ashley Pascual, Justine Valbarez and Regie de Jesus
The World Health Organization defines infertility as a disease of the reproductive system wherein there is failure to achieve a clinical pregnancy after 12 months or more of regular unprotected sexual intercourse. This has been recognized as a pandemic problem. Correspondingly, a 2013 Philippine survey indicates that 1 in 10 Filipinos are infertile. Several treatments and managements are available but in the Philippines – the Obando Fertility Rites is highly advised for infertile couples. This is a tradition that involves street dancing to honor three patron saints with the hope of conception. It has contributed enormously in the Philippine cultural identity especially when it comes to its devotional commitment and its shared testimonies to prove its purpose. On this basis, this study utilized a phenomenological design with covert observation and personal interviews with the devotees as its primary data gathering methods. Consequently, the findings of the study are summarized through six emergent themes which represent the roots of the culture’s existence, the devotees’ sentiments on their participation, other coping methodologies they followed, the life-altering experience after being granted with a child, how the parents’ role-performance was affected by the tradition and how it is intrinsically and extrinsically submitted to others.
Keywords: Obando Fertility Rites, devotion, Contemporary Filipino Culture