This year, Pat and I celebrated Easter in San Miguel de Allende, Guanajuato, Mexico.  Although I don’t know much about the Catholic religion, I am certain that they incorporate more ceremony and pageantry around the Easter season than what I grew up with as a Southern Baptist in Texas.

Although we were traveling with our friend during the first few days of Semana Santa, there were still many processions and events to experience.  As a matter of fact, there were so many events that there was a formal talk with flow charts and maps to help the everyday gringo navigate all the celebrations.  There were events and processions every day.  In addition to the large processions through centro, many of the neighborhood churches had their own processions.

Here are some images of this past week’s events.

A procession on Tuesday in our neighborhood, Colonia Guadalupe.

This procession is known as the Sacred Encounter.  On Good Friday, this 18th Century statue was taken to the Parroquia, a very ornate church in the main square, and when facing a statue of the Virgin Mary he lifts his head and acknowledges her.

The Holy Burial procession on Good Friday had around 2,000 participants.  The young girls in all of the processions wore white dresses with purple sashes, and are supposed to represent angels.  It was a very solemn occasion.  There were crowds and crowds of people, and everyone was very serious and respectful.  No cheering, no laughing, no talking on cell phones.

After a sombre week of processions, on Easter Sunday everyone gathers in the Jardín to blow up a bunch of paper maché Judases.  There were 24 mannequins for the occasion.  According to a friend of mine, they are supposed to represent various villains and unliked politicians.  Last year they blew up George W. Bush and Saddam Hussein.  I think pyrotechnics and explosions trump plastic Easter eggs.  What do you think?

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