The guide to Semana Santa, a lecture/slide show about Holy Week

By Charlotte Bell

Semana Santa is the most important religious event of the year in San Miguel. There are countless processions and other unique occurrences happening during this time. For the visitor it will be a daunting process trying to figure out what to attend. With so many options how do you decide what to do? They all start from different locations and at different times. Many of the events are ancient and have special significance. But without information they are just strange occurrences. To help the visitor navigate these events Charlotte Bell has created a lecture/slide show “The Guide to Semana Santa.”

“The Guide to Semana Santa”
By Charlotte Bell
Mon, Apr 14, 4pm
El Sindicato
Recreo 4

Bell spent years taking photographs and collecting information for her book Tears from the Crown of Thorns. The book contains photographs, history and information all about Semana Santa in San Miguel. Much of the lore came from interviews with local residents who are the organizers of the processions and other events. You will learn about San Miguel’s very own saint maker, the late Genero Almanza. In the 1800s San Miguel was known as the “cradle” of saint makers because of its school for santeros. She will tell you about the storeroom of angels for the Procesión del Santo Entierro on Good Friday. You will learn about Padre Felipe Neri de Alfaro, 1709-1776, creator of Atotonilco, who would walk barefoot seven miles into San Miguel carrying a heavy cross on Good Friday. This procession continues to this day. Various religious statues have an ancient history such as the figure of Ecce Homo which is over 300 years old. You will learn how he is known as the “rainmaker” as he travels from church to church for nine months of the year to bring on the rains. The knowledge you will gain will increase your understanding and appreciation of Holy Week in San Miguel.

You will leave her talk with timetables and maps on the “what,” “where” and “when” so you can get the most out of this special time in San Miguel. She’ll assist you in finding the ultimate spots for taking great photographs and explain procession etiquette.

Get the facts so you can get the most out of this extraordinary time in San Miguel. Bell will also be signing and selling copies of Tears from the Crown of Thorns. Join Charlotte Bell at El Sindicato, Recreo 4, Monday, April 11 at 4pm.


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