“I feel a lot of faith to move forward”: In Venezuela, hundreds of faithful gather for the procession of the Nazarene of Saint Paul

Several hundred people accompanied the procession of the Nazarene of Saint Paul in Caracas on Wednesday, a traditional event that had been suspended for two years due to the coronavirus pandemic.

The Nazarene of Saint Paul is a wooden sculpture of Christ in a purple tunic, bearing the cross, which dates from the XNUMXth century. Every Holy Wednesday, it is carried by devotees through the streets of central Caracas, a procession that has gathered thousands of people in the past.

The Nazarene of Saint Paul is the object of great devotion in Venezuela. He is credited with performing several miracles during the yellow fever epidemic that spread through this South American country in the XNUMXth century.

Due to the Covid-19 pandemic, in 2020 and 2021 he was transported in a glass-encased vehicle for worshipers to view but the procession was kept to a bare minimum.

Dressed in purple like many participants, Arturo Herrera carried a cross. “I made a promise 25 years ago when my brother disappeared (…) I pray to God that he reappears”, he confides to AFP, ensuring that he has not lost “ hope ".

"I am very sad about what is happening here in Caracas, Venezuela, about the economic situation" but "I feel a lot of faith, a lot of courage, to move forward", assures Laura Leon, 53, a image of Christ in his hands.

To celebrate the return to normal, some 4.000 purple orchids were brought to the Basilica of Saint Theresa, the starting point of the procession.

Venezuela, a country of 30 million inhabitants with a Catholic majority, has registered 521.618 cases of Covid-19 since the start of the pandemic, with 5.697 deaths, according to official figures, questioned by the opposition.

The editorial staff (with AFP)

Image credit: Shuttertsock / Rommel Gorosabel

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