Nazarene procession returns to streets of Venezuela after 2 years

Caracas, Apr 13 (EFE).- Devotees and church members carried the Nazarene of San Pablo – an advocation of Jesus Christ – on their shoulders through the streets of the Venezuelan capital on Wednesday after two years of the statue being paraded in a glass vehicle due to Covid-19 restrictions.

The parishioners, many of them dressed in purple, called for the third time an end to the Covid-19 pandemic, as well as peace in Venezuela and the world in the midst of the war that Russia declared against Ukraine at the end of February.

Among those present in the procession was Caracas Mayor Carmen Meléndez, who told EFE that an open-air mass was celebrated in honor of Nazarene at 4 pm, after which those gathered followed the Stations of the Cross procession through 14 stations representative of different events from Jesus Christ’s last day ending with his resurrection.

Meléndez welcomed the return of religious celebrations this year after a period of lockdowns and quarantines due to the pandemic.

“(We were) locked up for two years, right now in this open-air mass, with such a large space, with this capacity, because the people took to the streets to honor their promise to the Nazarene. This is a blessing from the Nazarene and from God, that we are here, in Plaza Diego Ibarra, with a lot of space,” the mayor said.

Cardinal Baltazar Porras said he felt moved to see the growth in the faith of the Venezuelan people.

“It has been demonstrated today with this crowd that comes to pay homage and tribute to him, to ask for strength from the Nazarene of San Pablo that for so many centuries has accompanied the people of Caracas,” he said.

The Nazareno de San Pablo procession is one of the oldest religious acts in Venezuela and is attended by thousands of people.

The image arrived in Venezuela from Spain at the beginning of the 17th century and was initially installed in the former San Pablo church in Caracas, where, according to tradition, the first of the “miracles” attributed to it took place. EFE


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