Easter Pageants and Processions

Procession during holdy week in Palma

Easter parade in Palma. Credit: Lanoel, Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 Unported

The Procession de la Sang on Holy Thursday in Palma is not starting and finishing at the cathedral as usual but is returning to its earlier route.

This year, unlike previous years, the start and finish point for the parade on Holy Thursday is the church la Anunciación de María and not the Cathedral of Mallorca (or ‘La Seu’, as it is known).

This is one of the changes to the Easter programme initiated by the Bisbat de Mallorca.

The itinerary from and to the cathedral was traditional in Palma in the 20th century.

Change of route

The procession this year will make a stop at the Cathedral of Mallorca and parade through the streets of the Palau Reial and Olmos.

According to Bernat Riera, the president of the brotherhoods of Palma, the main reason for the change is to reduce the length of the procession, since the number of brotherhoods has grown by 30 percent.

The Bishop of Mallorca, Sebastià Taltavull, says the brotherhoods are rooted in a spirit of fraternity and charity.

Easter parades

Easter is celebrated with parades throughout Mallorca, which can lead to temporary road closures and delays.

In Inca, for example, the procession of Crist Rei to Santa Maria la Major will be celebrated on Good Friday, starting at seven o’clock in the evening after mass.

In Llucmajor, on Holy Thursday, the Sant Sopar mass will take place.

Many towns and villages have their own dramatic representations of Good Friday, with actors playing the main characters, including Jesus Christ on the cross. The celebration is called the ‘Devallament de la Creu’, meaning the ‘descent from the cross’.

In Pollença, on Good Friday, the traditional ‘Devallament de la Creu’ has been celebrated at El Calvari, which has 365 steps, since the seventeenth century. This is “one of the quietest processions in Mallorca”, according to the president of the Calvari brotherhood, Miquel Vives.

In Alaró, the main procession will be on Good Friday and will be made up of six brotherhoods.

The special feature of celebrations in Valldemossa are the “tres botets”, or “three jumps” which the effigy of the Virgin Mary makes on encountering her risen son on Easter Saturday. This is reputedly the only parish in Mallorca to have preserved this tradition uninterrupted.

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Annie christmas in the Bay of Palma
Written by

Annette Christmas

Annie Christmas loves language and communication. A long-time resident of Mallorca, she enjoys an outdoor life of cycling, horse riding and mountain walking, as well as the wealth of concerts and cultural events on the island. She also plays fiddle in a traditional Mallorcan dance troupe.