FROM MEXICO AND BEYOND!
Welcome to this holiday posting which is my "Holiday Greeting Card" to each and every one of you who read and follow this blog. In the spirit of the holidays, I have decided to share some of our many Christmas photographs which we have accumulated during our nomadic journey throughout Latin America. After the following brief introduction and a sample of some of our photo memories, you will find my large and colorful holiday photograph album at the end of this "greeting card." Thank you for joining me this year and wishing you Feliz Navidad (Merry Christmas) and Feliz Ano Nuevo (Happy New Year)!
Posadas: Posadas are a Catholic tradition that first emerged in Spain, but is now most commonly celebrated in Mexico and Guatemala. Beginning on the 16th of December and continuing until the 24th of December, Posadas involve a re-enactment of Joseph and Mary's search for a shelter where the Virgin Mary could safely give birth to Jesus. Occurring as either a street procession or at a party, holiday celebrants will split into two groups. One group goes house to house and knocks on the door asking for shelter or 'posada' while the other group act as the "inn keepers."
Both sides of the re-enactment hold candles and sing a traditional song asking for shelter/posada. "En nombre del cielo, nos pido posada, pues no puede andar mi esposa amada" (In the name of heaven, I ask you for shelter for my beloved wife who can't go on) begin the Joseph and Mary group with the inn keepers denying them entry. This is repeated several times until Joseph and Mary are finally allowed entrance at which time both groups sing together. In some elaborate cases, the Posada procession can take over a street or even a whole town with elaborate costumes.
Misas: Religion plays a very significant part in Latin America during Christmas which is hardly surprising considering that the region makes up the world's largest percentage of Catholics, In countries such as Bolivia, Chile and Mexico, people attend the Midnight Mass, called the 'Misa del Gallo.' In Venezuela, worshipers attend mass every day in the mornings beginning December 16th which is called "Misa de Aguinaldo."
Nacimientos: Nacimientos, or Nativity Scenes, are one of the most unifying traditions across Latin America. In countries from Mexico to Peru, Chile, Paraguay, and Guatemala people set up elaborate Nativity Scenes inside their homes, in their churches, and in public places. Figures range from life-size to miniatures.
Here are a few of my favorite holiday photographs as a prelude to my CHRISTMAS IN LATIN AMERICA album which you will find at the end of this posting. Enjoy and happy holidays!
A wonderful poinsettia Christmas tree at the beach - I love it!
Please do not hesitate to contact me with any comments, suggestions, or questions. I may be contacted directly by email or by posting a comment on this blog page. Muchas gracias Laura
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Hoping that Senor Ho Ho brings me a red sleigh for Christmas!
What about you?