Crucifixions in the Philippines
Every Good Friday, pious Filipinos walk the streets flagellating themselves with cat-o-nine-tails tipped with broken glass, in an attempt to expiate their sins.
A select few, however, go one step further. They re-enact Christ's crucifixion, including dragging the cross up a convenient hill (while being whipped by friends and family), having themselves nailed to it, and hanging for hours, under the sweltering heat of the tropic sun.
Done in several remote provinces, notably Pangasinan and Bulacan, there are, of course, several differences from an actual crucifixion - nobody has died from one of these re-enactments (yet). The nails are stainless steel, soaked in alcohol. When the crosses are erected, ropes are tied under the penitent's armpits, to support the upper body and prevent suffocation. They are only allowed to stay on the cross until the town doctor feels they cannot take anymore, whereupon they are brought down (gently), the nails are removed, and the penitent goes off to wash his wounds in the river (which, according to local belief, will close up and heal within a day or two if the penitent was granted redemption.)
And the primary difference, of course, is that these people actually WANT to be nailed to a largish piece of wood. That's right, they do it willingly, as a show of their faith. Penitents who do this are usually middle-aged men, some of them ex-convicts, who view crucifixion as a way to pay for the sins of their past lives. Some also believe that crucifying themselves will also atone for the sins of their family and loved ones. Some of them do it once, and return to their families, while others return yearly, those who believe once isn't enough to wash away whatever transgression they once committed.
There has been only one instance I know of where a foreigner (a Japanese) was allowed to join this tradition. Unfortunately, said Japanese gentleman failed to mention he and his crew were actually in the process of shooting a porn movie, using the crucifixion as footage. Since then, the scandalized townspeople have never allowed outsiders to join this ceremony.