PHILIPPINE health officials today warned people taking part in Easter crucifixions and self-flagellation rituals to get a tetanus shot first and sterilise the nails to avoid infections.
Every Good Friday in the predominantly Roman Catholic Southeast Asian nation dozens of men re-enact the crucifixion of Jesus Christ by having themselves nailed to wooden crosses.
At the same time hundreds of others, mostly men, strip to the waist and whip themselves until their backs are cut and bloody as a way of atoning for their sins over the past year.
The Catholic church frowns upon the crucifixions and self-flagellations which have become a tourist attraction in a number of towns around the country.
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And bear in mind that the word "excruciating" is derived from the word "crucifixion."