The city of Braga is the perfect backdrop to experience the Passion of Christ in Portugal, as it offers one of the most multifaceted expressions of Holy Week. These celebrations were deep-rooted in the community when Christianity was implanted in the fourth century and the city developed through the role of its archbishops, religious orders and secular corporations.
Braga’s Holy Week Commission was founded in 1933, which influenced significant changes to the dynamics involved. Braga’s Holy Week features ancient processions like Dos Passos (1597) and Ecce Homo (1513), completed in more recent times with the addition of Our Lord’s Burial (1933) and the revival of La Burrinha (little donkey) procession (1998), all of which contribute to the grandeur of this time of year.
The streets are decked in purple and the smell of incense is omnipresent. The most representative liturgical celebrations take place in the Cathedral.
The swords are removed from the Our Lady of Dolours sculpture in Congregados Basilica. Seven churches venerate the Lord’s tomb. And then joy breaks on Easter Sunday and the bells ring loud throughout the city. Rockets explode in the sky. All homes open their doors displaying springtime abundance. The Lord has risen!