In Phuket, as rehearsed formally yesterday (Apr 3), sacred water will be drawn from the well at Wat Chalong, officially called Wat Chaiyathararam, explained Komart Pankeard, Chief of Phuket office of the Ministry of Culture.
“Everything is going well. More than 80 people from Phuket provincial offices and local residents joined the rehearsals in preparation to ensure that the ceremonies will be conducted smoothly and correctly,” he told The Phuket News.
"The water will be drawn from the well at Wat Chalong because the well at the temple was dug during the time when the deeply revered Phra Visutthiwongsajarn Yanmunee (better known as the historical figure Luang Por Chaem) was abbot, Mr Komart said.
“People believe that the well is sacred and that its water is able to heal people. This well was also used for the Royal Coronation ceremony for King Bhumibol Adulyadej (Rama IX),” he added.
According to the official itinerary for Saturday (Apr 6), the ceremony at Wat Chalong will start at 10am, with prayers and the lighting of candles during followed by a call for blessings from angels.
At 11:52am, Governor Phakaphong will lead the ceremony to start drawing water from the well, during which will be poured into five-litre golden bowl called a “Kan Sakon”.
The Kan Sakon will then be closed with a lid, covered with a blessed white cloth which will be tied with a white ribbon.
The water will then be carried by procession to Wat Prathong in Thalang, where it is to arrive at 12:38pm. Not one drop is to be spilled, Mr Komart noted.
The water will stay at Wat Prathong, where blessing ceremonies will begin at 3pm on Monday (Apr 8).
Governor Phakaphong is to arrive at 4pm, when candle-lighting blessing ceremonies and mass prayers by 30 monks will begin. The Governor, charged by Royal Command to lead the blessing ceremonies, will be called on to read a special Brahmin prayer before he is allowed to enter the blessed area where the water is being kept.
The prayers and blessing ceremonies will continue until 10pm.
On Tuesday (Apr 9), mass prayers will begin at 9am. At 10am the candles will be extinguished and the Kan Sakon will be sprinkled by with blessed water from Wat Prathong, which is dedicated as a provincial royal temple.
The white cloth covering the Kan Sakon will then be removed and the Governor will decant water from the Kan Sakon into a Kan Tor – a royal ceramic urn handmade especially for the Royal Coronation of His Majesty King Maha Vajiralongkorn Bodindradebayavarangkun, complete with the royal coronation emblem hand-painted on it.
The Kan Tor will then be sealed before Governor Phakaphong leads an alms-giving ceremony, which will be followed by more prayers.
The mass prayers will conclude at 1pm, with the Governor and his entourage and police escort departing the temple by motorcade at 5pm.
Governor Phakaphong and his police escort must travel with the water all the way to Royal Palace in Bangkok, Mr Komart said.
“I am not sure what time they are to arrive there,” he added, though the official schedule of events for the coronation will see the holy water collected nationwide sanctified at Wat Suthat in the capital on April 18.
“The public are welcome to attend the ceremonies and prayers,” Mr Komart explained.
“All attendees are asked to wear yellow,” he said.