Saturday, March 26, 2016

Visit to the Seven Churches

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Every year before Easter as many as 10,000 Catholics hit the streets of Cuenca to participate in Maunday Thursday. This tradition dates back to Roman times when Christian pilgrims visited the city's seven basilicas as an act of penance. Cuenca attracts thousands of visitors for this event because of the proximity of churches in the historic district.

Cynthia and I happened to be downtown on Thursday at a going away party for friends who are moving to Spain. When we left the restaurant at around 10 PM we were stunned to find the streets absolutely packed with pedestrians. We'd never done the seven churches walk before and spontaneously decided, "What the heck, we're here--let's do it!"

I happened to have my camera with me so here are some photos:

Vendors were everywhere making sure no one was hungry.

Here's the New Cathedral under a full moon.

As this is by far our biggest church there were tons of people going in and out.

Some other shots from churches along the way.

Many of our churches are beautifully lit at night, but we discovered they must be on timers that go off at 10:30. I wish I had a better photo for you.

We made it to five churches before heading home. On the way we crossed the Tomebamba river

and walked down our very quiet street after a busier than expected evening.


izzie11 said...

I just love to hear how spontaneous you can be in Cuenca. And, one thing that always gets my attention is that you can walk home from most places. I would not feel safe walking home in any area in the U.S. There are just too many criminal acts where you least expect them. How far do you live from the things that you visit most frequently ~ grocery store, restaurants, exercise facilities, etc? I know you must have mentioned before, but if you don't mind to answer.
Your photos are always a treat! And, I really love to see people on the street. When I was in Mexico, there was always some activity going on and I really like that. People out enjoying themselves, having fun.
I'm really enjoying your regular posts, so I hope you will continue!

Edd Staton said...

It has been my observation that wherever you live most of your basic needs are within 15-20 minutes of your home. The same is true here except we get to those places on foot! Thanks for your kind words. I'm really enjoying the opportunity to share what seem like everyday experiences because doing so makes me realize our life is pretty damn awesome!