The Ecuador Chronicles - 2011-21
La Dolorosa in Quito;
A Manifistation at a Jesuit School;
Leads to a Grand Tradition
Today we have a Chronicle by Live Well Ecuador Principal Mathieu Guillory. Matt covers the La Dolorosa Procession and gives some information on the event that lead to this grand Ecuadorian Catholic tradition
by Mathieu Charles Guillory
La Dolorosa - A Catholic Tradition in Ecuador
I often say to myself of events in Ecuador…..”This does not happen where I come from”. There can be many reasons to say this in Ecuador, but the constant manifestation of beliefs by the Ecuadorians will often bring that phrase to mind.
As I have mentioned in earlier Chronicles…..one of the strikingly different aspects of Ecuador compared to more “Developed” countries is the way Ecuadorians manifest their beliefs. Whether it be political or religious…..Ecuadorians appear more comfortable demonstrating their beliefs in public venues as opposed to more official approaches such as voting or ridiculous public opinion polls.
One of Ecuador’s largest religious events that best exemplifies this manifestation honors the miracle of La Dolorosa. On April 20, 1906, school boys at the San Gabriel Jesuit boy’s school in Quito witnessed an event that has given Catholics around the world one of the most recognizable images of the Virgin Mary. The event, which was witnessed by two other Jesuits as well, has only reinforced the already strong Marian traditions of the people of Ecuador. While enjoying their Sunday evening dinner, the boys noticed that the eyes of the image of the “La Dolorosa” began to open and close. The boys were further questioned several times after the event with a formal disposition to the Diocese of Quito and all the boy’s stories never wavered or changed.
The event is celebrated on each 20th of April with a rosary procession at 5:00 AM through the streets of Quito. I often join these Ecuadorians but on those days which I do not attend…the chanting of the faithful in the procession and their famous fireworks never fail to awake me as they pass in the streets……”This does not happen where I come from”.
Furthermore…on the 20th of April of each year the event is marked by a nine day novena in which Ecuadorians (and now more tourists) profess every day for nine days prior to the 20th at 5:00 AM, and then on the 20th there is a large procession to culminate the Fiesta in which many school children are in attendance. Because the 20th of April fell during Semana Santa this year the La Dolorosa Procession was moved to May 20th, but was still quite an event.
Whether you are Catholic or not….the annual event in honor of La Dolorosa is an impressive act of faith and should not be missed. It is one of Ecuador’s many traditional events that greatly exemplifies the Ecuadorian people’s love for their Mother! Can you say “This does not happen where I come from”?????
Here are some images of this year's Procession:
Matt - With Bernadette and Juan Carlos
Matt - Thank You
Matt - Another great Chronicle! And what an interesting Ecuador Catholic Tradition. I do often find myself thinking in Ecuador “This does not happen where I come from”. Thank you.
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