Dominican Republic Holiday Festival del Santo Cristo de Bayaguana

Dominican Republic Holiday Festival del de

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While the whole Dominican Republic is celebrating the , another festival is being celebrated known simply as the Festival of the in San Juan Bautista de . This festival starts from December 28 and ends on January 1 with the offering of the . The offering of the is giving thanks to the for rains that shower their crops.

The tradition started when a group of farmers decided to offer a bull to to stop the ongoing draught and to pray for rain. The crops then were already withering, fruits were drying, and the cattle were dying that the prospects for the farmers surviving the year were very bleak. A few days after sacrificing the bull the rains started to fall, crops, and animals were saved and the tradition started.

This festival has been going since 1604. What made the festival a strong crowd drawer companionless from the and the return of rains stopping the draught are the attributed to the festival. First, the Christ to a little girl praying for a cure for her mother’s blindness that returned the mother sight shortly after the apparition. Second, a paralytic praying to participate in the festival stood and walked. In 1924, during the feast day, left while the church bells rang by themselves.

Confirmed by the or not, commemorating the first event in 1604 was strengthened. In order for the festival to be successful, the Commissioners of de los Milagros go around the region several days before the event to request for . The faithful, on the other hand, offers the animal as a confirmation of their faith and expression of their thanks.

Every year on December 28, the commissioners, wranglers, and the public implicate the residence square towing their for consecration. The procession date a solemn one is buried from being silent. Dominicans celebrate the day the best way they know how, with joy. A municipal band, led procession of persons singing, praying, dancing and the ever present firecrackers. That is only the start of a four – day event. During the evenings, there are more singing, chanting, dancing, and imbibing of coffee, rum, and jengibre. The songs chanted are makeshift verses sung a capella with alternate leaders taking their turns while the rest joins in the refrains equivalent a choir. For outsiders, the scene would stand for far from the normal images of sacrificing but an all night four days partying.

On January 1, people from all over the country gather to participate in masses offered as thanksgiving for and prayers granted and favors granted by for the past year. This is the most solemn and inspiring part of the festival. After that the mass the people gang up outside some to buy the , some to trade them with something else but the proceeds go to the church to be used for church programs.
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