IZALCO, El Salvador – The centennial procession of Christs of the Salvadoran town of Izalco took place on Thursday with hundreds of faithful after it was suspended last year due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Members of various brotherhoods carried 12 images of crucified Christs through the streets of Izalco and joined the Procession of Silence, which will return on Friday morning to the temple where it began.
This procession, which according to experts is a sign of the syncretism of Catholicism and the indigenous peoples of the area, was held despite the fact that the Salvadoran Church had arranged for processions to be carried out mainly inside churches, and with few people.
The number of the participants was lower than in the years prior to the pandemic, but hundreds of people still accompanied the procession wearing face masks to prevent infection.
It was presided over by an image of Christ carrying his cross. This image, like that of Mary Magdalene and others, was carried by members of the Jesus of Nazareth brotherhood of Izalco, who wore their traditional purple robes.
Irma Cortes was grateful for the procession’s return to the streets on Holy Thursday, despite the fact that the pandemic is ongoing. She said that the brotherhood of San Gregorio Magno, to which she belongs, “has approximately 350 years” of history in the municipality.
Jose Ramirez, of the same brotherhood, was moved to visit the municipality again for the procession and said it was a way of remembering that “the indigenous community of Izalco is still alive.”
Among the religious and cultural activities that have been suspended in 2021 are the processions on Palm Sunday and the departure of the famous Talcigüines from Texistepeque city in which about 45 men dressed head to toe in red, with their faces covered, “expiate the sins” of the faithful with blows of a whip.