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Posts Tagged ‘Día de Candelaria’

February 2, besides being Groundhog Day in the USA, is Candelaria in Mexico.  And so, late Monday morning, I went in search of Niño Díos.  None was to be found in the vicinity of the Cathedral.  Only the traditional red huipiles of the female Triqui members of MULT caught my eye.

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I continued my quest, heading up to Templo de Nuestra Señora de Guadalupe.  However, as I walked through Llano park, no one was carrying a Niño Díos, dressed in this year’s finery, to the church to be blessed.  Only a giant red horse sculpture by Oaxaqueño artist, Fernando Andriacci (and its red feedbag?) was there to see.

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I turned west and headed for home, hoping I might possibly spot a Niño Díos as I passed Templo del Carmen Alto.   But no, only a red-shirted water delivery man caught my eye.

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Funny, if we allow ourselves to see things as they are and not as how we expect them to be, we can return home with something completely different and delightful from what we had set out to find.

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Today, Día de la Candelaria (aka, Candlemas, Presentation of Jesus at the Temple, and Feast of the Purification of the Virgin), marking the end of the Christmas season, is being celebrated.  Families dress their Niño Dios (baby Jesus) figurines in new clothes and bring them to church to be blessed.

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Niño Dios dolls come in a variety of sizes and are sold throughout the year at the ubiquitous shops that sell religious articles.  I spotted these across Independencia while dining on my previously mentioned nieves.

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Yesterday (February 2) was the Christian holy day, Día de la Candelaria (aka, Candlemas, Presentation of Jesus at the Temple, and Feast of the Purification of the Virgin).  In Mexico, tradition calls for families to bring their figurines of niño Dios (baby Jesus) to the church to be blessed.

Niño Dios comes in all sizes — the ones brought to the Church of Guadalupe (north end of Llano Park in Oaxaca) last night, ranged from four inches up to a foot and a half.   All were dressed with care, creativity, and attention to detail.  They were carried and displayed with obvious pride by both young and old and men and women — though, in truth, mostly women.  Several angelic young girls led the procession into the church, while the priest stood in the doorway sprinkling each niño Dios with holy water.

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As mentioned in my Of kings and babies… post, the other (very yummy) aspect of Candelaria in Mexico is the tamale party that follows — tamales courtesy of the person who found a tiny baby Jesus figurine in their slice of Rosca de Reyes.  To protect all those who partied hardy after the mass, photos will not be posted of the fiesta I attended.  All I will say is the tamales were delicious and wine, mezcal, and hot chocolate flowed freely.  Muchisimas gracias to all who made it happen!

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