Thursday, April 1, 2010

semana santa.

a year ago i was in guatemala.
its crazy how quickly a year flies by and how dramatically life can change.

when i was in guatey
it just so happened to be semana santa or holy week- and we just so happened to be in Antigua.
Antigua is known globally for its Holy Week festivities-
people travel from all over the world to take part and experience the week long event.

The festivities begin on Palm Sunday when Jesus is carried from church to church throughout the city on the shoulders of the devoted followers. The men dress in purple robes and carry these massive 'floats' throughout the week. Each night another procession takes place replicating the final days of Christ on earth. Imagine in your head: MASSIVE PARADE.

On Good Friday the streets are covered with alfombras (or carpets) of flowers, pines, clover, fruits and anything that is all nautural. We were told the poorer families that want to participate use saw dust that they color to make the carpet and the richer families use real flowers and fruits. The carpets are constructed right in front of the homes and businesses along the route of the final parade. People spend hundreds of hours and all their hard earned money on their afombra- all to prepare the way for Jesus on his way to the cross.
It truly is a remarkable sight.

On the evening of Good Friday their is a drama that depicts the trial and sentencing of Jesus.
(that part we did not see- it was after dark. and well going out after dark wasn't something we wanted to do)
anyway- we were able to watch some families while they constructed their alfombra-
and see the final product while we watched the parade pass through town.
it was truly an unforgettable experience.

the one below is made of SAWDUST!
slowly assembled together to make this incredible design.

maybe my favorite:

there are thousands of people gathered to watch the parade...
this guy found the best seat in the house.
on top of the roof.

sometimes it seems that we forget all about semana santa
we celebrate palm sunday-
maybe go to a good friday service-
and then its easter.

i love that this city shuts down for a week.
no one works.
no one does anything.

they focus on the passion of Christ.
all week long.

perhaps there is a lot to learn from the amazing people of Guatemala.


enough pondering for now...
love & peace

No comments: