Hundreds of thousands of Barefoot Devotees joined a procession in Manila Today to honour a centuries-old black statue of Jesus Christ believed to have healing powers.

The Black Nazarene, a 17th century icon carved in Mexico, is believed to have healing powers and is able to grant miracles.

Barefoot Devotees in Red and Yellow Shirts waved white towels while shouting “Long Live Nazarene Icon” during morning prayers at Rizal Park in the Filipino Capital.

A five-kilometre procession followed, drawing devotees jostling to get close to the revered statue and wipe it with their towels.

It is not known why the statue is black, although there are myths that the original statue donated by Spanish priests was burned after a fire erupted on the ship that carried it to the Philippines.

The statue paraded in the streets is no longer the original, which has been damaged and is now preserved in the minor basilica of the Black Nazarene.