One of the most famous women of Seville lives in a small church a few minutes from downtown Seville. While many people outside of Spain may not know who she is, this beautiful woman brings tears and celebrations across the entire city when she passes through.
She’s not a famous actress, singer, or royalty – she’s a statue. La Virgen de Macarena is one of the holiest figures in Spain. Every year, she is brought from her home, the Basilica de la Macarena, and paraded through the city during Holy Week. The parade begins on Good Friday as she is carried throughout the city on a beautiful float to the sounds of screams and praise and the shedding of many tears.
You don’t have to be here during Holy Week to get a glimpse of the beautiful virgin. Stop by the small church and visit the beautiful altarpiece with the Weeping Virgin. As you walk up to the altar for a close look, you can see the detail with which which we was designed. Her hair is life-like as it is made from real human hair. However, the Weeping Virgin would not be who she is without the crystal tear drop on her cheek.
While visiting the Basilica, you can see two of the biggest floats in the Holy Week parade behind the altar to the virgin. The church was built in 1949 by Aurelio Gomez Milan and the altar piece which holds the virgin for most of the year was designed by Juan Perez Calvo. As for the beautiful virgin, it was believed that she was sculpted by Luisa Roldan in the 17th century.
Getting to the church takes about a 20 minute walk from downtown or a ride on one of the local buses which stops just outside of the church. However, for many in Spain and the city of Seville, any chance to visit La Virgen de la Macarena is well worth a visit.