Saturday, March 15, 2008

Night of Altars

Semana Santa (Holy Week) is celebrated in a big way in the villages and towns of Mexico, but particularly in San Miguel de Allende.
One of these special Lenten traditions, is the Feast day of Nuestra SeƱora de los Dolores (Our Lady of Sorrows)or Viernes de Dolores (Friday of Sorrows).
It is a prelude to the coming Holy Week, and honors the Mother of Christ in her desolation at the foot of the cross, with processions, masses, and altars.
All over San Miguel de Allende beautiful altars are erected in churches, private homes and public places to remind us of Mary's pain and grief and that she is considered the greatest of all martyrs. “She gladly experienced this lifetime of sorrow so believers could receive her Son’s ultimate gift, the grace of redemption.

Last night along with hundreds of people we strolled the cobblestones streets of San Miguel de Allende admiring some of these magnificent altars ranging from simple and humble to spectacular and elaborate creations. All who wished to visit the altars were invited into some of the old colonial homes and the homeowners gave visitors ice cream, fruit drinks and other treats. (Even though they look like churches, all of these photos were taked in private homes, and most are only a portion of the erected shrine).

Even for those who are not religious, it was a very moving experience to see how the Mexicans celebrate this special day devoted to the Mother of Christ. It is not to be missed if you find yourself in Mexico during this holiest of Holy Christian seasons.

Another perfect day in San Miguel de Allende.

Gypsy Girl

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Hi Mom, I wish I could be there for Holy week. The pictures are so beautiful and moving. everyone seems to be enjoying Mexico. Keep the pictures coming.