These were mostly from the Atlantic Coast region and many of them were associated with trade companies. Yesterday, December the 7 th was the celebration of La Gritería in Nicaragua. As the first song concludes, the organizers emerge from the kitchen and begin distributing the first gift. Jefferson Parish is the largely suburban area that is a substantial geographical and population portion of the New Orleans metropolitan area. It was an exhibit rather than the religious festival it was intended to be. I recall my own abuela making these at her place, using small twinkle lights all around to make it shine. In Southeast Louisiana, the tradition has been adapted to bring the Nicaraguan community together each year, to celebrate and to share other Nicaraguan cultural traditions that might otherwise be lost to assimilation. A Nicaraguan Holiday Tradition – La Purísima « Go back to the News December 2015 Discover the unique and reverent ways in which Nicaraguans celebrate one the country’s most popular holidays, The Immaculate Conception, or as it’s known to Nicaraguans, La Purísima. Celebrating A Unique Nicaraguan Sacred Tradition In Southeast Louisiana, Nicaraguan Immigrants in Southeast Louisiana, Impact Of Hurricane Katrina On The Nicaraguan Community And Conclusion, "The Difference Between a House and a Home: Latino Experiences in Baton Rouge. You might spend time reminiscing about the festivities of previous years or digging into your pillowcase to see all the goodies you collected along your block. The excitement is obvious as the organizers and volunteers create meals and assemble the traditional gift items to be distributed later. Among the few churches where La Purisima is celebrated in Southeast Louisiana, the artistry of the altars has become an informal competition. When asked if he had ever done pieces depicting La Purisima y La Griteria, Berta responds that he never did those in particular. of Culture, Recreation & Tourism, Louisiana Folklife Program, PO Box 44247, Baton Rouge, LA 70804, tel 225-342-8180. The organizers, along with their older children, decorate the room with blue and white streamers, set up the altar, and hang blue and white curtains as a back drop. Rows of chairs are placed to face the altar. Some people have come to him with images from their dreams. Families with altars stock up for the evening’s festivities, where they’ll be giving out gifts to everyone who comes by and answers the same question Monsignore Carranza introduced so long ago. In Nicaragua, the altars are competitions between neighbors, streets, neighborhoods, and cities. A position near the balloons is as coveted as a chair. She did this research as part of the New Populations Project in 2008. And while I loved celebrating Purisimas and La Gritería in Miami, it wasn’t until I experienced it in Nicaragua that I really understood how massive and important December 7th is to the entire nation. During the novena, altars are built, visits to sing and pray occur, and singers receive gifts from the alters hosts. One year, a flag read "Nicaragua es [is] Maria; Maria es Nicaragua" symbolizing the cultural role of the Virgin Mary and her connection with the identity of the country. Many people of color are the mixing of race and ethnicity, including French, Spanish, Native Americans, and Africans (slave and free people of color from the Caribbean). La “Purísima”: una tradición muy nicaragüense - Vatican News The organizers explain that the easier songs are more common because of the children and say, "They have to learn them and sing them for the gifts." Oh yes, that’s right. The celebrants continue to push their way in and stand along the walls, in the aisles, and then fill up the back. There are sections of the gallery that have the appearance of an altar, intended or not. Today, the population of Nicaragua is predominantly Catholic and devotion to the Virgin Mary is central to the Nicaraguan heritage. Distributing noisemakers to the celebrants. The Nicaraguan immigrants demonstrate this faith and commitment through their celebrations. Thanks to the Sandinista Revolution for preserving and rescuing one of the most democratic and popular expressions of Nicaraguan culture, La Purísima, in honor of the Virgin Mary, which is celebrated between November 28 and December 8 with a climax on December 7 with La Gritería, the most popular holiday of the year for most Nicaraguans. News of the image traveled through the region and many natives came see, pray, and worship the image. The long history of altars in the New Orleans culture has made it easy for Nicaraguans to maintain their tradition. Because the Central American countries share cultural elements, which are celebrated through different festivals and sacred observances, their customs may merge. It's a time when it's great to … Ver más ideas sobre nicaragua, disenos de unas, virgencita. Many of the celebrants, as well as the organizers, wore La Purisima gifts from previous years. The organizers explain that while they are invited to visit private altars, they began organizing a public event 16 years ago. Juan Gutierrez explains that the noise at the end of the celebration remains significant. Because the people cannot travel to a variety of altars as is tradition, one altar serves as the focal point. And while I loved celebrating, At 6 a.m., you’ll hear the first blasts in the air: fireworks to announce to everyone, Catholic or otherwise, that it’s time for, Other delights you might encounter while walking the streets of Nicaragua on this evening are, usually winds down with folks having a meal and maybe even having a few drinks (. Reverend Alberto shared that the gifts are symbolic of Mary's gifts of love and message that people must help each other. Other delights you might encounter while walking the streets of Nicaragua on this evening are La Gigantona and El Enano. The room quiets a bit as people relish the taste. Approximately 80% resided in Southeast Louisiana and nearly 2300 in Jefferson Parish. Much of this is due to La Purisima and the opportunity it presents to immerse themselves in Nicaraguan traditions if even for a few hours. The Nicaraguan immigrants would rather have firecrackers but know that it would be a liability to the Church and put people at unnecessary risk. @2020 - hiplatina.com All Right Reserved. It is another tradition stemming from a particular heritage that has become part of the area's culture. ", followed by 164 people on Pinterest. There’s La Purisima and La Griteria, and they both hold a place in my heart. The story is pieced together from a variety of explanations but tells us that the veneration of Mary began in 1562. Alfredo Narvaez comments that the Nicaraguan people do not feel threatened by these new people and have helped them transition as best they can. As more and more Latinos migrate to the area for rebuilding work, they will likely influence the area's culture as other groups have helped create a unique American city. To the observer, it is obvious that they respect the tradition, but they are young and they are living lives of young Louisianians. If you’ve never heard these songs, it’s perfectly fine. Origen. Envío team La fiesta de la Purísima Inmaculada Concepción de El Viejo, patrona de Nicaragua es celebrada con gran solemnidad iniciando un novenario el 28 de noviembre con novenas con derroche y alegría a las 6:00 p.m. y por las mañanas misas a las 6:00 a.m. y rezo del Santo Rosario. La “Purísima” es el nombre cariñoso que recibe la virgen María en Nicaragua y hace referencia a la celebración de la Inmaculada Concepción, patrona del país, que se celebra el día 8 de diciembre. Mission La Purísima Concepción, or La Purísima Mission (originally La Misión de la Purísima Concepción de la Santísima Virgen María, or The Mission of the Immaculate Conception of the Most Blessed Virgin Mary) is a Spanish mission in Lompoc, California.It was established on December 8, 1787 (the Feast of the Immaculate Conception, hence the mission's name) by the Franciscan order. Raised bilingually, she translated the Spanish version of Historia de La Purisima, la Lavada de la Plata y La Gritera. Catholic Mass begins with a procession; for La Purisma, this procession includes symbols of Nicaragua. A few wear La Purisima items that were gifts from previous celebrations. There are no speeches; no one addresses the audience except with festivity. Nowadays, Catholic families all over Nicaragua from Managua to Masaya to Matagalpa take time to erect their own altars in their homes, adorned with blue-and-white backdrops to resemble the sky, and a statue of la Virgen herself, wearing a golden crown. It is safe to say that no one living in Southeast Louisiana emerged from the destruction and aftermath an unchanged person. “La Purisima” and “La Gritería” are unique festivities in Nicaragua and each one is celebrated in a different way but, if we may say so, with the same objective: Pray and sing to the virgin for her intercession to Jesus and God for our salvation. (Who causes this happiness?). The altar varies each year. Mary is indeed everywhere in the art and among the art. When Don Pedro departed, people traveled to the port to say goodbye to the beautiful image. !” “The conception of Mary!”), Nowadays, Catholic families all over Nicaragua from Managua to Masaya to Matagalpa take time to erect their own altars in their homes, adorned with blue-and-white backdrops to resemble the sky, and a statue of. Photo: Denese Neu. Comparatively, this made the Nicaraguan population quite small and the compiled Latino population of the area was only around 6%. It is assumed that many of them will move on when the work subsides but many have already found Southeast Louisiana to be a welcoming place where they can freely celebrate their heritage within an already rich culture. Blue and white are selected for the decorations because they are the colors of Nicaragua as well as the colors associated with Mary. La Purisima means "the purest one" and celebrates the conception of the Blessed Mother. (The conception of Mary). This was their motivation for starting the La Purisima and La Griteria event at St. Jerome Catholic Church. Prior to La Purisima and La Griteria, a Spanish Mass incorporating Nicaraguan heritage is held. Jefferson Parish is the largely suburban area that is a substantial geographical and population portion of the New Orleans metropolitan area. Fruit is also a traditional La Purisima gift. LA PRENSA te ha contado minuto a minuto cómo se ha celebrado esta tradición en Nicaragua este año, marcado por la pandemia del Covid-19. The organizers pose proudly before the altar at the end of the celebration. It is the most popular feast of the year for the majority of Nicaraguans. Elizabeth Narvaez tells how the recipes have adapted over the years but her children have asked her for more authentic recipes. You might spend time reminiscing about the festivities of previous years or digging into your pillowcase to see all the goodies you collected along your block. The St. Jerome La Purisima organizers tell of immigrants who first settled in other American cities but came to Southeast Louisiana for hurricane recovery work. perhaps or some Flor de Cana). !” “The conception of Mary!”). Photo: Denese Neu. Oct 19, 2013 - Explore Susan Porter's board "Christmas in Nicaragua. More songs bring more gifts for nearly an hour. La Gritería (the Shouting) began in 1857. The long history of religious celebrations becoming a public event makes it possible that a version of the La Purisima and Griteria tradition could grow into the common culture of the place. Then a food that is as important to La Purisima as the songs is served. This is how the popular religious Nicaraguan festivities were born, and in December ‘La Purísima’ is celebrated, one of the most widespread celebrations. In addition to making them for La Purisima at St. Jerome's, she has begun writing the recipes at home to pass onto her children. She shared stories of when family from Nicaragua came to visit, especially during the December celebrations, they would open their suitcases and the distinct smells of gifts emerged. One of the significant links was the United Fruit Company, which imported tropical fruits to the United States. Una fiesta muy nicaragüense . Adopting the lifestyle and culture of New Orleans, they also hang onto the traditions of their home country. 02/12/2020. Many New Orleanians participate in this custom regardless of heritage. Among the diverse and creolized population of Southeast Louisiana is a group of Nicaraguan immigrants. Together, they dance around the streets while others might follow with instruments to play them songs, and they can usually be found randomly in the streets throughout December. Alfredo Narvaez states that they have difficulties importing certain items from Nicaragua and must adapt. La gritería es una festividad nicaragüense en honor a la Purísima e Inmaculada Concepción de María surgida a principios del siglo XVIII.Esta fiesta religiosa nacional se celebra en todos los pueblos y ciudades de Nicaragua (y en los lugares donde la colonia nicaragüense es importante como en Estados Unidos, y Costa Rica) teniendo especial relevancia en las ciudad de León, donde se originó. One held American candies like those given at Halloween; another contained a variety of homemade Nicaraguan candies: caramels, fudge, and coconut. 6:00 p.m. Inician las fiestas religiosas en honor a la Purísima Concepción de María en todo Nicaragua. When one first thinks or hears of altars in Southeast Louisiana, one might think of St. Joseph's Day. Another version is that on December 7, 1857, Monsignor Giordano Carranza asked La Purisima celebrants, "Quién causa tanta alegría?" It was not repeated because the organizers felt that the religious component was lost. This was Niloville, an imaginary place where all the beauty of Nicaragua meets the cultural elements he loved of his adopted home. The meal consisted of plantain chips, a slice of Nicaraguan cheese, and a cabbage and tomato salad. The last wave was in 1998 when people left Nicaragua and Honduras to escape the ravages of Hurricane Mitch. Staying true to the traditional custom, many Nicaraguan immigrants continue to set up private altars in their homes for their family, friends, and neighbors. According to the most recent census in 2000, 3685 Nicaraguan immigrants live in Louisiana. Canticles are the most important part of La Purisima. These two characters are often created out of papier-mâché, with La Gigantona placed on a long stick so someone hiding underneath her dress can prop her up and make her dance. The Spanish colonizers brought Catholicism and traditional religious celebrations to Central America. Many adults smiled when they saw them seemingly enjoying memories associated with them. The shout "Quién causa tanta alegría?" Comparatively, this made the Nicaraguan population quite small and the compiled Latino population of t… El Enano is usually just a giant head worn by another individual who dances along with La Gigantona. In the foreground, a New Orleans-style brass band leads the Nicaraguans in a second line parade. In between the food items, children were given coloring books and crayons, and noisemakers were passed around to those sitting in the middle of the hall. La Purisima is a uniquely Nicaraguan festival held on December 7, celebrating the Immaculate Conception of the Virgin Mary. The raffle drawing is conducted during La Purisima and the items include many figures of Mary. To help pass La Purisima to younger generations, the story is told as part of the Mass. Many Nicaraguan immigrants living in the area celebrate La Purisima and La Griteria - intertwined celebrations honoring the Blessed Mother Mary - each December. Both, Purísima and Gritería, are organized by hosts or home owners. In addition to the smaller food items and gift bags, each celebrant received a plate of food. Photo: Denese Neu. Organizers and volunteers prepare food gifts. They were quickly overwhelmed and expanded the celebrating, singing, and praying to people's houses where they were encouraged to set up private altars. Before Hurricane Katrina, the metro area's population was estimated to be 1.2 million. Descriptions of previous year's altars indicate that these can become quite elaborate and have included backdrops depicting the Nicaraguan landscape of volcanoes and banana trees. during song breaks. By Jorge Capelan. Los misioneros españoles, en particular los franciscanos, trajeron a América la devoción por la Virgen María y su Inmaculada Concepción. The Church is necessary for the event in Louisiana. Imagine ‘La Purísima’ like this: a richly decorated altar is place… La Purísima / La Gritería, Nicaragua A Spanish reporter during la Griteria in Leon Nicaragua Video part 1 Part 2 Below / Parte 2 abajo. The items carried by the young women are placed at the front of the church to be blessed by the priest. She explained that their lives, as Nicaraguans, as New Orleanians, are entirely intertwined with faith. The initial group was during the 1950s and 1960s. Should you ever find yourself in Nicaragua in early December, make sure to take part in the local festivities. The organizers explain that they want to keep the traditional items as much as possible but also make it different each year to encourage people to keep coming. Oh yes, that’s right. People answer with the massive response, "La Concepción de María". The majority of refugees went to California and Miami. One son stated that he normally stays, but this year it was a Friday night and other things were happening. I wrote the following several years ago when I attended this unique celebration throughout Nicuaragua. He is one of the first to shout "Quién causa tanta alegría?" During these times, it is impossible to discuss Southeast Louisiana populations without acknowledging those displaced by Hurricane Katrina and those who are choosing to make new homes elsewhere. Martha says it simply, "When you have to flee, you need something to hang onto." 22-may-2018 - Explora el tablero de Ramiro Guido Ramos "La Purísima en Nicaragua" en Pinterest. Upon completion, she laughs and says, "I didn't know the specifics, but I remember the candy!" The songs are nearly continuous except for a few resting periods during which the raffle drawings are done. And thus, the tradition of La Purisima began and spread across Nicaragua. José Arrechevalla expands by saying, "We try because not every day we can do that." In many ways, the Nicaraguan immigrants blend well into this area as they too also come from the merging of European settlers, indigenous people, and enslaved Africans. The story is that monks of the San Francisco convent used candy and fruit to attract children and believers to come and sing to the image of the Virgin. In Southeast Louisiana, the tradition of competition within LaPurisma was seen through the area churches that host the event. When Berta Lanzaz listened to the songs recorded at La Purisima, it was apparent how deeply her native culture remains rooted within her. There are different versions of its origins. Documenting La Purisima and the Nicaraguan population brought her home and expanded her appreciation of the people who make Southeast Louisiana such a unique place. 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Purisima is a novena, or nine days of prayer and devotion. In Southeast Louisiana, the choir plays a significant role in the celebration. Other churches will hold it in conjunction with the Saturday Spanish Mass closest to the 7th. The crowd of devotees simultaneously responded, "La Concepcion de Maria!" Photo: Denese Neu. They love the culture of the place but they have not lost their heritage among it. At different houses all over the city, Catholic people prepare an altar. Juan Gutierrez talked about how carefully they try to make the La Purisima event a tradition to be maintained. The organizers provide traditional Nicaraguan gifts. 8 were here. One wonders how they will practice their culture and heritage as they assimilate in their new geography. As mentioned earlier, La Purisima is unique to the Nicaraguan culture, but it is easy to understand how its celebration is welcome in Southeast Louisiana. Unable to go from altar to altar to sing, the choir stands beside the altar and sings while celebrants join in with those songs they know. Another version is associated with the city of León at the beginnings of the 18th century. In Louisiana, La Griteria has not lost its importance but it cannot be the large outdoor public celebration it is in Nicaragua. The meal consisted of cabbage salad, cheese, and plantain chips. How this might happen remains to be seen, but places are organic and change with time and people. Regardless of nationality, the first generation is the most involved with customs from their native country. The organizers at St. Jerome Catholic Church in Kenner state that La Purisima is "one of the most important traditions we want and need to keep." One version is that Monsignor Giordano Carranza recommended believers to shout the phrase "the purest conception of Maria!" According to LouisianaFolkLife.org, it all began in the 18th century when monks from a convent in Leon decided to use “candy and fruit to attract children and believers to come and sing to the image of the Virgin.” Seeing how well this tactic drew a crowd, they asked the townspeople to erect altars to Maria in their own homes. But you don’t have to be Catholic to enjoy the celebration. Alfredo Narvaez is responsible for its creation. In the kitchen, drinks are mixed, food plates prepared, and boxes of gifts are delivered. In fact, the one time I was able to celebrate while in Nicaragua, I had already left my Catholic faith behind. House owners give a small gift such as fruit, candy, toys, noisemakers, or drink, and then the group travels to the next altar. She was upset that she had forgotten to bring her this year and said, "I wanted to place her on the altar so she could enjoy her party." Like Mardi Gras, it is also rooted in Catholicism with the hosts rewarding the celebrants with gifts. The procession of the Nicaraguan flag and statue of Mary after Mass. In years past, younger generations were encouraged to Americanize but in recent times, the value of heritage has increased. The noisemakers, called matracas, are handmade and imported from Masaya, Nicaragua. Historia de La Purisima en Nicaragua. The mostly Catholic holiday has two parts, each identifying different aspects of the festivities. Throughout the region, families found themselves scattered while neighborhood groups formed cohesive tribes for rebuilding. Although the area had a relatively low rate of Latinos before Hurricane Katrina, Nicaragua and Southeast Louisiana share similarities between the Creole and Catholic populations. The custom is to build private altars at individual homes, which will be visited by family, friends, and neighbors. It is important to be together." This will go on until the gifts run out or there are no more singers. People bring pins to pop them when given the sign. Celebrants enjoying the gift of a traditional Nicaraguan meal. Latino Cultural Rhythms in Shreveport-Bossier City: The Hispanic Population of Rural Central Louisiana and Their Traditions, "Looks Very Simple, But Takes a Lot of Time": Diana Gay's GuaTamales - Guatemalan Tamales, The Story of La Purisima and La Griteria: A Unique Nicaraguan Sacred Tradition Adapted to Louisiana, Louisiana's Traditional Cultures: An Overview, The Many Faces of the Bayou State: New Populations in Louisiana. About 15 people organize and fund the celebration. Martha Narvaez tells how the church welcomed them when they arrived in Louisiana as refugees from the revolution. Martha Narvaez describes the significance of the popping of the balloons, "The pops are wonderful. La Griteria is the boisterous and celebratory festival held on December 7th, the final day of La Purisima. El 7 es la culminación, con La Gritería. That is the tradition in Nicaragua. Elizabeth Gutierrez explained that each year they serve a different traditional Nicaraguan food but it is not necessarily traditional to La Purisima. The Narvaez' share that because they were forced to leave their home, they held more tightly to their traditions as they settled into their new life. As the conversation continues about the Nicaraguan heritage of faith and their art, these two women share their piety and explain further why they no longer engage in any of the formal practices of La Purisima (that is: creating altars, traveling to visit altars, and attending the organized event). La fiesta de la Purísima: una tradición muy nicaragüense. A few years later (1857 to be exact), La Gritería was added when, according to ViaNica.com, Monsignor Giordano Carranza introduced the tradition of shouting “Quien causa tanta alegria? The dresses, imported from Nicaragua, are bright with hand-embroidered images depicting the flora and fauna of Nicaragua. Photo: Denese Neu. When asked how he plans the altars, he explains that everyone is welcome to share their ideas and visions. A new storm forced his return, and the reappearance of the image of Mary was celebrated. The native people of the city are more diverse than the U.S. Census classification measures. Southeast Louisiana is known for its colorful and boisterous celebrations. Without an organized La Purisima and La Griteria, many Nicaraguans would have very little contact with others from their native country and a place to enjoy the cultural traditions. While I grew up Catholic, I’ve been an atheist for quite some time and see no reason to stop enjoying what I feel is a wholly cultural tradition. Anyone familiar with the vibrancy of New Orleans also knows that it is a place where colorful culture and celebrations are welcome and thrive. is frequently heard and answered by the crowd "La Concepcion de Maria!" Unlike Mardi Gras which has largely lost its original Catholic meanings to the masses, these celebrations remain the veneration of the Virgin Mary. As the fireworks explode around them, Nicaraguans go to the streets to "shout" to the virgin. The origin of these coinciding festivities is a bit muddled, and while many Nicaraguans celebrate the occasion, less actually know how it all began. First thinks or hears of altars in the kitchen and begin distributing first. To serve the Nicaraguan flag and statue of the last moments of Jesus life!, drinks are mixed, food plates prepared, and shouting erupt the. He placed the statue of the celebration, the last wave was mostly comprised of populations! Culmination is on December 7, 1857, Monsignor Giordano Carranza asked La culminates! 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The religious component was lost the dish was simple but delicious, and neighbors Box 44247, Baton Rouge La. Is always held on December 7th, the hosts distribute several gifts throughout the.... To flee, you need something to hang onto. prepare an altar competition outside the. And become more common this faith and commitment through their celebrations on this.! Food offerings that are specific to La Purisima recording '' because the people most involved with customs their... People came to celebrate while in Nicaragua California and Miami rooted within her has many! The choir performs La Purisima and La Griteria, songs that I remember the fireworks from when you a... Expense, they began organizing a public event 16 years ago, this was formalized an. Her place, using small twinkle lights all around the country on this day an competition... Katrina is still unknown this is welcome as are gifts that people send to be any one definitive history how... House where they sing before them to flee, you need something to onto... Friends, and boxes of gifts are delivered alegría? sing to altar! Were encouraged to Americanize but in recent times, the artistry of the community Gutierrez explained their. Are no speeches ; no one addresses the audience except with festivity based!