Arts & Entertainment

Processions return to Guatemala after 2 years

Guatemala City, Mar 3 (EFE).- Processions returned to the streets of Guatemala after a two-year pandemic break on Thursday with the traditional penitential march of the image of Jesús Nazareno de los Milagros through the center of the capital.

Although some small processions had already been organized in recent days, the latest one marks the first Thursday after the start of Lent on Ash Wednesday and was the first large-scale procession to be held since the Guatemalan government detected the country’s first Covid-19 case in March 2020.

The procession began at 2.30 pm at the San José church, a few kilometers north of the heart of Guatemala City, and will continue for 10 hours before returning to the same place, with thousands of people participating.

Processions in Guatemala were suspended by the health ministry between March 2020 and Feb. 25 this year, when the ministry once again allowed these religious activities to be held under a series of protocols for Catholic communities with the aim of preventing Covid-19 infections.

However, not all churches have decided to go ahead with the processions, and in many regions of the country they have opted to cancel them for the third consecutive year to prevent a further spread of the coronavirus.

Thursday’s procession was also held amid preventive measures as the usual burning of incense was suspended.

Processions are customary in Guatemala during Holy Week, declared intangible Cultural Heritage of the Nation by the Ministry of Culture and Sports since 2008 for being a sign of national identity.

Guatemala has recorded the most Covid-19 deaths (17,029) in Central America since the start of the pandemic two years ago.

Approximately 45 percent of the 18 million Guatemalans are Catholic, 42 percent are Protestant and the rest consider themselves agnostic, atheist or of other religions, according to surveys released by local media. EFE


Related Articles

Back to top button