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Feast of Our Lady of Altagracia (Dominican Republic) Options
Daemon
Posted: Saturday, January 21, 2017 12:00:00 AM
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Feast of Our Lady of Altagracia (Dominican Republic)

A cloth painting of the Virgin Mary is the focus of a yearly celebration in the Dominican Republic. It was painted by a Spanish artist and brought to the island nation in the early 1500s. The portrait, crowned by a gold and silver tiara by Pope John Paul II in 1978, is located in a basilica in the city of Higuey, in the Altagracia province. Every year on January 21, thousands of pilgrims visit the Higuey cathedral to worship. The feast day is a national holiday; it is marked by all-night church services, singing, dancing, and festivals in many Dominican towns. More...
monamagda
Posted: Saturday, January 21, 2017 3:09:08 PM

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Location: Bogotá, Bogota D.C., Colombia
The painting of the Virgen de la Altagracia




The legend states that the image of the Virgin mysteriously disappeared from the house of the brothers Trejo. The painting later reappeared in an orange bush. The location of this bush is where the first church of Higuey was built. Now thousands of devoted visitors make the trek here to deposit offerings and to ask favors of the Mother of Christ. Dominicans pray to her for miracles and cures and for intercession for whatever troubles them. Las Noches de Vela/ the Nights of Prayer is celebrated the night before Altagracia Day.

The painting (shown here) of the patron saint of Dominican Republic that is found in the Basilica in Higuey (see the picture slide show of La Basilica de Higuey) is said to have been painted in the late 15th century in Spain. It was mysteriously delivered by a shrouded old man who dropped the painting and disappeared. This painting shows the scene of the birth of Jesus. The frame is made from Dominican gold and inlaid with fine enamels, precious stones and jewels. The painting Virgen de la Altagracia was crowned the spiritual mother of Higuey by pontificate of Pius XI in August 15, 1922. The ceremony was held in Santo Domingo at the Puerta del Conde. It was declared that Día de la Altagracia celebrated on January 21st would be a National holiday by the President of the Dominican Republic, Doctor Joaquin Antonio Balaguer Ricardo. Many important people of the Catholic Church attended this ceremony.

This celebration is now a blend of African religions and Catholicism. Dominicans recite prayers, play African influenced music, sing hymns and dance.

http://www.colonialzone-dr.com/important_stuff-religious_beliefs.html
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