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Holy Week in San Miguel de Allende by Joseph Toone

Actualizado: 25 mar

In San Miguel de Allende, Easter is more than painted eggs, chicks and chocolate bunnies. Here in the mountains of Central Mexico, Semana Santa or Holy Week is a special religious and solemn time for San Miguel's deeply religious communities.

The Holy Week schedule offers many processions, services and a spectacular conclusion of exploding Judases in the Jardin. Following is a schedule of the events and please be respectful as this is a holy and special time in the city.

Vespers March 27

Wednesday of Holy Week recalls the abandonment of Jesus with early evening services called Vespers of Darkness. A special mass with a candelabra on the altar holds 15 candles. One candle is extinguished for each Psalm sung until finally, as the service ends, a single candle remains, representing Christ alone in the garden.

Holy Thursday  March 28

Following an ancient San Miguel tradition, people visit seven churches today to view special altars depicting Jesus before his death and eat various types of bread. Holy Thursday commemorates several important events of Holy Week with masses including the Last Supper, the washing of the feet of the 12 Apostles and the arrest of Jesus.  The perfume of chamomile is characteristic in every church.

Good Friday  March 29

On Good Friday, there are two major Catholic rituals celebrated in two different churches at different hours.  One is the encounter of Jesus with the Virgin Mother on the road to Mount Calvary during the Stations of the Cross that takes place in several streets surrounding the Jardin. Upon seeing his mother, the ancient statue of Jesus actually bows his head in sorrow. The second parade began around 1712 and is the Holy Burial procession starting and ending at the Oratorio of San Felipe Neri church late in the afternoon. There are other popular processions and reenactments today in Colonia San Luis Rey and Atotonilco.

Quiet Day  March 30

Holy Saturday in San Miguel de Allende is mostly quiet as the city waits for the joy of the Resurrection on Easter Sunday, when the events of Holy Week will come to an end.  This quiet day is the feast of Our Lady of Solitude, a patroness of San Miguel since 1555.

Piñata Madness March 31

Today, Easter Sunday, is a celebration of Jesus’ resurrection featuring huge piñatas that explode over the jardin. The piñatas feature politicians, Judas and celebrities not in good public favor whose dismembered paper body parts are quickly gathered by local children and sold to visitors.

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