Holy Week

Date:
Variable

Organizer:
Real Cabildo Superior de Cofradías Pasionarias of Yecla (The Superior Association of Easter Brotherhoods).

Website:
fiestas.yecla.es


One detail:
The festival has been declared of Regional Tourist Interest.

Useful information:
Families, couples, individual/ ideal to enjoy religious, traditional festivals (celebrations of withdrawal).


Remarkable information:
The large number of activities which are organized during Lent, our most peculiar religious processions such as Holy Monday, Holy Tuesday, the procession of the “Farolicos” (Little Street Lights) and The Funeral of Christ (“acto del Entierro”) and our tangible heritage such as Holy Week Museum, located in the “Iglesia Vieja” (Old Church). We can contemplate there a great part of over 80 statues which are taken in the 11 processions held in Yecla, as well as exhibitions of embroideries, goldsmithing and wood carving. The oldest and most well-known image is the “Virgin of the Anguishes” by the sculptor Francisco Salzillo (1763) declared a Property of Cultural Interest, which can be found in the Basílica of la Purísima.

For further information:
http://semanasantayecla.net/

It recommends you:
“The course of the Procesión Penitencial del Rosario (penitential procession of the Rosary) over the narrow streets of the town’s historic quarter on Holy Monday night. The Procession of the “Farolicos”, unique in Spain, leaving San Francisco church, during which hundreds of children accompany the Cristo yacente (the reclining image of Christ) with the lights of the “farolicos” on Holy Tuesday night. The peculiar ceremony of the Funeral of Christ, which takes place in San Francisco church as the end of the procession and the seclusion characterizing the peculiar Procession of the Solitude, during which the people of Yecla accompany the Virgen de los Dolores (Virgin of Sorrows) from San Francisco church to the church of Nuestra Señora de los Dolores (called “el Hospitalico”) while intoning the Latin verses of the traditional Stabat Mater hymn.
Francisco Muñoz, President of the Real Cabildo Superior de Cofradías Pasionarias

Historical background of the celebration:
Holy Week festivities have been celebrated for many years, and are linked to the Franciscans. In Felipe II’s Relaciones Topográficas of 1575, eleven brotherhoods are mentioned, although they aren’t penitents brotherhoods.

The religious spirit among the member of the brotherhoods used to appear at the moment of one of the brothers’ death, during which the others must be present to help the deceased have a good passage to the other life and pray for him. During the 17th century, penitents wearing robes and with their faces covered started to parade. In Isabel Soriano’s will, there is a legacy to her niece consisting on a cape made of stammel so that she could dress of a Nazarene.

During Lent, it was a tradition to bring preachers to Yecla. As an anecdote, it’s worth mentioning the hiring of Licenciado Torres, who was paid 6,800 maravedis (the old Spanish coin) in 1569. In that era there were already 21 brotherhoods. In 1660 Fray Francisco Muñoz brought from Roma a Lignum Crucis to the “Asunción” Church in order to boost the popular Brotherhood of Vera Cruz.

In the year 1764 Francisco Salzillo carved the sculpture group of the Virgin of the Anguishes (la Virgen de las Angustias) for the Venerable Third Order and the musician Juan Oliver Astorga visited Yecla on his way back from London and composed a processional march dedicated to Easter celebrations of Yecla. During this procession, the “Custodia” is carried under a pallium. The image of the Cristo de la Adoración de la Cruz (Christ of the adoration of the Cross) a work by the sculptor Juan Esteve y Bonet.

It was in the 18th century when, before celebrating the procession of the Funeral of Christ (“El Entierro de Cristo”) two sermons were delivered; the Descent and the Solitude (“La Soledad”). This procession of the Funeral of Christ gave rise to the current parades, which adopted its final form in the second half of the 19th century. They have been in constant evolution throughout the years.

We have peculiar parades such as the procession of the “Farolicos” (Little Street Lights) which takes place on Holy Tuesday night, when thousands of children carrying little street lights accompany the Cristo yacente (the reclining image of Christ). It’s also worth mentioning the procession of “la Cortesía” (The Courtesy) on the morning of Good Friday and the procession of “el Entierro” (the Funeral of Christ”) during the afternoon of the same day and on this night, The Procession of “la Soledad” (the Solitude).

It’s also noteworthy the presence of a typical character in the processions in Yecla on Easter Sunday, the “diablico” (the Devil) who runs through the streets fleeing from the victory of life over death. All this represents that good could prevail over evil.

Within the typical cuisine of these festivities, we can highlight the patties filled with potato and the stew of chickpeas with cod meatballs.