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Mexican traditions: Posadas

By: Mariel Díaz

The term Posada comes from the story where Mary and Joseph make a journey from Nazareth to Bethlehem and when not finding where to stay and Mary about to give birth, they take refuge in a stable.

But in Mexico, the term and the celebration of the posadas revolutionized with the passage of time...

It began at the end of 1580, at this time they began to celebrate Masses for nine days. Little by little it was turning into a celebration that included the whole population being in the streets, full of songs, dances and, of course, prayers. The posadas then began to be celebrated by different social groups, where the people who attended each celebration varied and they went from the streets to the interior of homes.

It was already from the twentieth century that the Mexican posadas took the form of the traditional celebration: nine days before Christmas, from December 16th to 24th, meetings are held that include representations of the pilgrimage of Mary and Joseph accompanied by songs.

The celebration begins when the hosts represent the innkeepers and the guests of the pilgrims, who ask for an accommodation by chanting the litany to ask for an inn (posada). At the end of this presentation, we go to the homes to do the prayer and later we enjoy dinner and family life.

Nowadays it has become popular to call an posada any non-religious party held in December before Christmas Eve, full of food, drinks, piñatas and, of course, friends ;)


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