Painting on the ceiling of Our Lady of the Rosary Church.
Photograph by Diego Gazola from "Atibaia, uma aberração paulista,"
EcoViagem, www.ecoviagem.com.br, 2007.
|In 1763, slaves who couldn't attend St. John
the Baptist's, the main church in Atibaia, began building their own.
Completed in 1817, the church is often called Nossa Senhora do Rosário
dos Pretos, Our Lady of the Rosary of the Blacks. This agricultural city
is home to the oldest and most active congada tradition in the
region. The five congada groups in Atibaia combine African and
Portuguese religious practices, centered around devotion to St. Benedict
and Our Lady of the Rosary. On December 27, as they have for over 200
years, the congadas gather outside Our Lady's church at dawn,
dressed in brilliant uniforms of scarlet, green, blue, pink, or white, and
carrying swords, banners, and musical instruments. The day begins with a
serenade and ends with fireworks. In between, to the sound of drums,
guitars, and pealing bells, the congadas process dancing through
the city: young, old, male, female, black and white. The festa of
Our Lady of the Rosary is part of a Christmas celebration beginning on
December 25 with the erection of two towering poles topped with images of
the congada saints in Rosary Plaza and concluding December 28 with
processions honoring St. Benedict. Information from the city's website, www.atibaia.com.br,
and other sources.
Also celebrated this date:
|Notre-Dame de Bon Secours, Lods, Doubs, Franche-Comté, France.
Oratory dedicated, 1863.|
|Marienstatt, Streithausen, Westerwaldkreis, Rhineland-Palatinate,
Germany. Abbey consecrated, 1227.|
|Mare de Déu de les Malalties, Marçà, Tarragona, Catalonia, Spain
(Mother of God of the Sick)|
|Nuestra Señora del Encinar, Ceclavín, Cáceres, Extremadura, Spain
(Our Lady of the Holm Oak)|
|Nuestra Señora del Rosario, El Valle, Granada, Andalucía, Spain,