Saturday, December 24, 2011
Las Posadas of Christmas!
Las Posadas is a nine-day celebration with origins in Spain, now celebrated chiefly in Mexico, Guatemala and parts of the Southwestern United States, beginning December 16th and ending late Christmas Eve and followed by la Misa de Gallo (Midnight Mass).
Typically, each family in a neighborhood will schedule a night for the Posada to be held at their home, 16th - 24th of December. Every home has a nativity scene and the hosts of the Posada act as the innkeepers. The neighborhood children and adults are the pilgrims (los peregrinos), who go house to house requesting lodging by singing a traditional song about the pilgrims. Most all pilgrims carry lit candles in their hands, yet others carry statuettes of Joseph leading a burro, on which Mary is riding. In small villages a young girl wearing a shawl rides a burro reenacting the story of searching for room at an inn (posada), any inn. Even a manger would do...