People cheered when a palanquin carrying a statue of the Goddess Matsu from Gong Tian Temple (拱天宮) in Miaoli County’s Baishatun (白沙屯) apparently refused to grant blessings to Ting Hsin International Group (頂新集團) chairman Wei Ying-chiao (魏應交) and former Ting Hsin Oil and Fat Industrial Co (頂新製油實業) chairman Wei Ying-chun (魏應充).
Kneeling down while holding bouquets of flowers, Wei Ying-chiao and Wei Ying-chun, like thousands of other devotees of Goddess Matsu, waited outside Ting Hsin International Group’s office in Yongjing Township (永靖), Changhua County.
When the palanquin, escorted by thousands of pilgrims, approached, the brothers prostrated themselves to plead for blessings
Photo courtesy of Lo Yu-chou
However, the palanquin bypassed the men triggering applause from the crowd as the men have become widely unpopular after their involvement in the production and sale of tainted cooking oil.
Although four people carry the palanquin, it is believed that the goddess orders which direction to take, where to stop and whether to perform the blessing rites.
“It is no use to worshiping Matsu when you do not have a heart,” a man in the crowd shouted.
Gong Tian Temple Administrative Committee chairman Hung Wen-hua (洪文華) said that Matsu might have decided not to stop because she did not feel any connection to the Weis brothers.
Wei Ying-chiao said that he would be humble in front of Matsu and reflect on himself.
The Matsu of Baishatun departed from Baishatun on Tuesday last week on a pilgrimage to Chao Tian Temple (朝天宮) in Beigang Township (北港), Yunlin County.
After arriving on Sunday, the goddess is on a return trip and is scheduled to be back in Baishatun on Saturday.
Devotees on the route often ask for blessings, and the goddess seldom refuses.
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