|  Category: Events

Between the 15th and the 31st of October 2008 Peru will celebrate the Señor de los Milagros (the Lord of Miracles) who is the patron saint of Lima. Every year in October thousands of devotees carry to the streets of Lima the painting of Señor de los Milagros, also known as the Purple Christ, between the Church of Las Nazarenas to the Church of La Merced in Barrios Altos. The painting is reputed to have been created by an Angolan slave in 1651 on a wall where the church of Las Nazarenas stands. Despite irreparable damage being done to the surrounding area of the Church of Las Nazarenas over the centuries – including an earthquake in 1746 which levelled the surrounding buildings – the painting survived.

The highlight of the celebrations are the spectacular parades and processions, as the Lord of Miracles slowly proceeds through the city, accompanied by the fervent chanting and music of his devotees, in the midst of vast clouds of incense…The enormous image is transported on the shoulders of the cargadores, or “carriers”, an esoteric brotherhood charged with transporting the heavy statue.In front of the image march the sahumadoras, a group of Catholic sisters, clad in the purple robes that mark devotion to the Lord of Miracles and waving incense burners around to freshen the air. Immediately behind them walk the cantadoras, the women singers who intone the hymns and devotional songs that accompany the procession. Look out for the “civilians” in purple clothes: many wear them as a sign of gratitude for a received miracle and some of them wear these clothes for up to a year. This festival is one of the most important in Peru. The worship of the Lord of Miracles has gradually spread from Lima to the rest of the country and the reputation of the figure as a healer grows every day, as new devotees come forward with accounts of mysterious healings and visions.

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2 Responses

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