Tuesday, December 15, 2009

A Humble Altar for Alms at the Church of San Lázaro


Here is an example of a humble altar for alms set up at the Church of San Lázaro. The base is sackcloth, the preferred fabric of penitents in general and Babalú in particular. On it sit four similar statues of San Lázaro, each with companion dogs, purple loin cloth, and crutches. This altar also includes an image of Nuestra Señora de la Caridad, Our Lady of Charity, the patron saint of Cuba. Common offerings to San Lázaro include flowers and cigars. There are candles to light the way.

These altars line the sidewalk all the way up to the entrance of the church, and other pilgrims drop coins at each one as they pass by.

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