The light and the flowers according to Saint John

It is Easter in Cartagena. It’s spring, and Cartagena smells like Easter. The ancient streets of the city are impregnated with the smell of thousands of flowers that dress the thrones. They light up as thrones and lights pass. It is Good Friday and we see Saint John coming, on his throne full of flowers, full of light.


Sanjuanistas marrajos con los característicos hachotes a butano en la procesión del Encuentro. Foto: A. G. Ballester.

The light is intimately linked to Saint John. The light that makes its way into the darkness of the dawn, between the red flowers of the throne, of that beautiful work by Juan Lorente in wood and silver in 1985. The light stained with blood by the suffering of the Master who is followed by his beloved Disciple in Calle de la Amargura. The elegant light of butane lights, a pioneering contribution from San Juan to the autonomy of lights in 1959. The prisms is the light of Cartagena’s early morning per excellence.

Trono de San Juan Evangelista en la procesión del Santo Entierro. Viernes Santo en Cartagena. Foto: M. Maturana, 2012.

The white light of the youth of a young apostle who accompanied Christ at the foot of the cross. Of a Saint John who is white at night like the thousand dozen flowers that dress the Cartagena throne of Aladino Ferrer in white since 1935. As white is the luminosity of the butane lights in the Holy Burial, accompanying in his rhythmic movement the elegant, majestic, natural step of the penitents of Saint John.

There is no Easter in Cartagena without thrones on its shoulders, without thousands of flowers, without thousands of watts of lighting in each of them. There is no Easter without light and flowers as there cannot be without order, without music, without drum, without images and embroidery. There is no Easter in Cartagena without its traditional streets illuminated by the elegant lights of the thrones, without its dawn, without the Marrajos. There is no Holy Week without Saint John.