The “Semana Santa” in Palma de Mallorca

On the gorgeous Spanish island Majorca – just as in many other Spanish places – traditional religious processions take place during the Passion Week, which are already prepared many months in advance with love for detail and a lot of community spirit. The procession groups clothe themselves in multicolored garments and partly also wear pointy headdresses and hoods, which also disguise the faces and only leave the eye slits uncovered. Some of the participants even walk barefoot, some of them drag heavy chains after them which are attached to their ankles as a sign of penance.

The groups of figures which weigh several hundreds of kilograms and depict scenes from the life of Jesus and Mary are elaborately carved and richly decorated. They are borne by men and women (!) through the streets of Palma for hours. And this they do in a crouched position, since the bearers have to slip under the pedestals of the groups of figures which are covered with cloth, where they – tightly packed – cannot see anything else than the legs of the person in front during the course of the whole procession.

The groups are accompanied with loud music by drummers and musicians who are wearing colorful gowns. Last but not least, also the church dignitaries walk through the streets. And when they all arrive at the starting point of their procession again, namely their church, tired and exhausted, they are already looking forward to the “Semana Santa” of the coming year. After all, taking part is an act of honor!

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