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Holy Week in Taxco
 Page updated on 03.10.2015
 
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Christ carried in an adorned car in the streets of TaxcoTAXCO is a charming colonial city, far from the main roads. It is an old mining center and the capital of the silversmith’s trade. Arrive from Iguala to discover the white city from the west or arrive on the road from Cuernavaca. You will be stunned by the setting of this special city. Arrive early morning or late afternoon to experience the best views.

Left picture : Christ carried in an adorned car in the streets of Taxco

The best time of year to spend in Taxco is Holy Week. Maundy Thursday and Good Friday are the days the richest with processions and the emotions that accompany them.


On Wednesday before Easter we sat on the second floor of the restaurant "La Parroquia" to overlook the Plaza Borda and one of the processions. There were a lot of people watching the diverse groups marching : athletic, dance or song clubs. People are sometimes barefoot and bare-chested, lifting up a float carrying a Saint or a Virgin.
Others (los encorvadas) have tethered feet and walk bent at the waist. Bells announce a new group. The processions are accompanied with drums and sometimes a band; children represent angels.

9:00PM : Procesión de la Santisima Trinidad. Empieza (beginning) en la Plazuela de San Nicolás Tolentino.

Procession of Christ in Taxco     Right picture : Procession of Christ in Taxco

Maundy Thursday : The processions re-enact the last days of the Christ. The Christs arrive from the diverse surrounding villages. We meet a bike-procession; the bikes are adorned with purple paper flowers (purple represent death); the bikers accompany the Christ and come from Sochula, 50 km from Taxco.
Masses are said several times a day in diverse churches in the city. We happened to arrive at the San Miguel church when mass was said and sung outside in order to welcome more people. Then, we crossed a procession of soldiers dressed in red: these soldiers were looking for Jésus. Later, on Plaza Borda, mass is said outside too and everyone burst into song.


procession of soldiers in red
The soldiers, dressed in red, which were looking for Jésus found him and taught him how to fight.

Left picture : procession of soldiers in red

During the mass, the penitents start barefoot and hooded. They wear a kind of black skirt held at the waist by a rope. They carry a huge bundle of thorny cane strapped to their shoulders and hands. Each of them is accompanied by three people: one walks backwards in front of him to point out the ruggedness of the street and the two others lift up the bundle to relieve him a little bit at every stop. They are called the
« encruzados » because of the cross shaped position of the arms.
In town, there are people everywhere with an atmosphere of both street fair and ardor : tacos, balloons, cotton candy. In the diverse churches of the town, the Christs arrive, wrapped in nice fabrics, in processions with the sound of the drums and violins. There are 70 Christs represented : About ten at the Veracruz church where we are. 10 people are needed to carry one “float”; the base weighs 80 kg, the statue 80 kg and the decor 20 kg. When arrived to “their” church, the Christs are prepared, pampered, waxed and set up on their base, dressed, decorated and ornate. They are on display for people that can touch them, sign and pray.

It is difficult to approach the church because of the horde of people. Then the processions start again, flanked with the believers carrying candles. They will last from 11PM to 5AM. You will hear the sound of the drums all night long.



10:00PM : Procesión del Divino Preso. Empieza (beginning) en la Parroquía de Santa Prisca and at 11:00PM : Procesión de los Cristos. Empieza (beginning) en la Iglesia de la Veracruz.

     Right picture : "los encruzados"

"los encruzados" Good Friday : This morning is a little bit quieter and we can approach the Santa Prisca church. Then the processions start from this church towards the Ex- Convent or vice –versa.
The penitents walk slowly on these cobblestoned, steep streets; some carrying huge heavy crosses, stop every five minutes, kneel and flagellate themselves : their backs bleed. They are called the « flagelantes ». Their “tool of flagellation” called « disciplina », a kind of whip made of a rope with nails on the end, is disinfected regularity, which intensify the pain. Another procession show the dead Christ dismounted from the cross. Another one carries the Christ lying on his back on a float. A procession honors Mary-Magdalene with only young girls dressed in white and wearing lace scarves. Other older women, the feet tethered and dressed in black, walk bent at the waist. They are called the « encorvadas ».





"los "flagelantes" in procession (with bloody backs due to flagellation!)

We met a penitent who just ended his ride : two men took the bundle away from him and another one maintained his arms in a crossed shape to make sure that he won’t come back to a normal position in a too much curt move.

The restaurant San Javier is a good place for diner while watching the procession. The food is good and the staff is welcoming. At midnight the silent procession starts ; no more music ; only candles.

Left picture : "los "flagelantes" in procession (with bloody backs due to flagellation !)

procession of penitents dressed in black (Good Friday)All these penitents belong to brotherhoods; they apply to be penitents and are chosen by the brotherhood. Each of them does it on behalf of faith, some to be forgiven for committed sins, others in order for God to grant wishes like the wish of healing a parent; They don’t get any credit for doing this since they are hooded.

 

     Right picture: procession of penitents dressed in black (Good Friday)

11:00AM : Procesión de las Tres Caídas (the tree falls) en la plaza Borda continua al Ex-Convento de San Bernardino de Sena.
1:00PM : Crucifixión de Jesús. Ex-Convento de San Bernardino de Sena.
4:30PM : Descendimiento (dismount) de Jesús en el Ex-Convento de San Bernardino de Sena.
5:00PM : Procesión solemne del Santo Entierro. Empieza (beginning) en el Ex-Convento de San Bernardino de Sena (penitents dressed in black).
00H00 : Procesión del Silencio. Empieza (beginning) en el Ex-Convento de San Bernardino de Sena (the silent penitents). Velación (wake) a la Virgen de Dolores toda la noche (all night long).

Holy Saturday: Easter Vigil at Santa Prisca church (11:00PM) followed by Midnight Mass.

Easter Sunday: Procession of people dressed in white to commemorate the day of Jésus’ resurrection in the main streets of the city at 4:30PM (procesión de la Resurrección).

In 2014, Easter is the 20th of April 2014.

From one year to another one, the schedule of the processions could change from 30 minutes to one hour. Take a program at the visitor center in Taxco.

Procesion del Silencio en Taxco - Holy Week







little girls dressed in white for the procession of Easter Sunday      Below pictures : little girls dressed in white for the procession of Easter Sunday

little girls dressed in white for the procession of Easter Sunday

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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