Hey all. This past week was Semana Santa (Saints/Holy Week), one of the most important times of the year for Catholic Spaniards. Semana Santa takes place the week before Easter and is celebrated with various religious processions organized by ancient catholic brotherhoods (hermandades). There is no way to even remotely compare it to anything in the U.S. Many consider Sevilla’s Semana Santa celebrations to be the most extensive and impressive in all of Spain. There are more than 50 processions throughout the week. Some last as long as 14 hours. The Thursday night leading into Good Friday is the highlight of Semana Santa. There are processions throughout the night and thousands of people pack the streets from dusk until mid morning just to catch a glimpse of some of the amazing proceedings.
Check out the pictures and descriptions below to get a better understanding of what Semana Santa in Sevilla is all about:
Each procession includes hundreds of costumed individuals dressed in body-length robes and cone hats. The outfits are eerily similar to KKK regalia, but have absolutely no connection to the U.S. group. These individuals walk in silence carrying candles or crosses.
The highlight of each procession is the float (paso). These intricately designed pasos are giant structures depicting either Jesus on the cross or the Virgin Mary. Each church/brotherhood that takes part in the procession has its own float…some of them are hundreds of years old. The pasos are carried by more than a dozen people who are unseen under the float.
Below you’ll find two short videos that I took with my camera during the Semana Santa processions. Hopefully they give you a better idea of what the celebrations are like. Enjoy! Until next time…