Las Posadas Mexicanas
|Las Posadas Navideñas in the Catholic Community
in San Antonio, TX.
It is time again to celebrate Las Posadas Navideñas or how many call them "Las Posadas Mexicanas," the
traditional Mexican reenactment of the search for lodging that Mary and Jesus did nine days before Christmas.
I feel so happy when I hear that throughout the Southwest of the U.S. In cities like Santa Fe, San
Francisco, Santa Ana, Sedona, and Phoenix amongst others, there are churches, cultural centers,
museums and families who reunite to celebrate this tradition.
Hispanic-Americans living in the U.S. start their Posadas celebration on the 16th of December with a
candle-lit procession that creates a beautiful and inviting scene. Seeing many young Hispanics participate and
love the tradition dearly, is pretty common.
Las Posadas started on the 16th century when St. Ignatius Loyola used an Aztec festival that honored their
sun God to teach about the birth of Christ. Initially this celebration was a novena or nine days of
prayer at church. Over time, people started Las Posadas in their homes with family and neighbors.
Bring Out the Mexican Tamales
The celebration ends every night with typical Mexican foods, especially
tamales served along
with warm ponche made with Tejocones, a fruit similar to an apple, and piloncillos
with small cubes of unrefined sugar cane.
I am no expert at cooking or rating Mexican tamales, but I am extremely happy to find fresh home made
Mexican tamales made by a real Mexican close to where I live. All because I am close to "Spanish Harlem." They are delicious
and only cost $2.50. Am I eating the real deal? I don't know but they are cooked in the corn or plantain
leaf and have the mole poblano flavor I enjoy.
In the 2008 Daily News article: "Posadas Tradición Con La Que Se Identifica El Inmigrante," professor
of Religions in Latin America at the University of Florida Manuel A. Vásquez, explains that
during Las Posadas serving delicious foods rich in calories symbolize abundance.
We would love to participate in this traditional Mexican holiday but after searching for a while
I found there is no one Posada Navideña happening in Manhattan or at least I don't know of one.
There are no posadas in NYC probably because our Hispanic neighborhood "El Barrio" is primarily Puerto Rican; instead our
family will be celebrating Parrandas this Saturday at El Museo del Barrio.
Picture by Greg Holland
This may start to change very soon as more and more Mexicans arrive to "Spanish Harlem" or "El Barrio." If there
is any Mexican American knowing where to go in Manhattan to celebrate Las Posadas please let us know
to spread the word!
More About Mexican Tamales
Make Tamales with Sandra Vasquez
Autenthic Tamale Recipe for la Candelaria