La Divina Pastora (Soparee K Mai)
She is known to bring individuals of two major religions – Christians and Hindus – together and many believe that she grants wishes and performs miracles. She is none other than La Divina Pastora, The Holy Shepherdess, an ebony statue that stands in the La Divina Pastora Roman Catholic Church in Siparia. Many foreigners come just in time for Good Friday to witness and join with the thousands who make the pilgrimage to the church.
After a few weeks, the Holy Shepherdess’ statue is ornately dressed and paraded through the streets, followed by a grand procession in celebration of the feast of La Divina Pastora.
Friday 7th April (Good Friday)
Contact: La Divina Pastora Roman
Popular Christian festivals include Christmas, Easter, the observance of Ash Wednesday and Corpus Christi. St Peter’s Day is also popular for Roman Catholics. An annual procession is held in many seaside villages including Chaguaramas, Cedros and Moruga. The Carenage RC Church and community host an annual procession to the sea, accompanied by the steel pan, where fishermen’s boats are then blessed by the local priest.
St Peter’s Day.
Thursday 29th June, 2023
Contact: Carenage RC Church
Christmas takes on a unique look with delicious Pastelles, Ponche-de-crème and Parang music. Midnight mass is usually held at many churches throughout both islands.
Divali (or Diwali)
During this season, thousands of deyas (small clay lamps filled with oil and a wick made of cotton) are lit across the country in homes, parks as well as Hindu temples, in celebration of Divali. Mother Lakshmi is worshipped and homes readied in preparation for family dinners. According to the Hindu calendar, it is celebrated on the 15th day of Kartika (October/November).
*November 12th, 2023
Contact: SDMS - 645-3240
The re-enactment of Lord Rama, the Hindu God of the Universe, and his time on Earth, Ramleela is celebrated with much joy. This 10-day festival is celebrated during the Hindu period known as ‘Nowraatam’ (Navratri) in the month of Ashwin (September-October). The festivities culminate with the burning of monumental effigies of Raavan, a defeated villain.
Celebrated in the month of
Contact: National Ramleela Council
Usually between the months of August and September, Ganesh Utsav is celebrated. Ganesha is the Hindu God commonly known as the remover of obstacles. Ganesh murtis (clay models) are built and painted with environmentally-friendly materials and sizeable processions carry them to the temples. On the final day of this 10-day festival, the murti is taken to the river where it is re-immersed.
*September 19th, 2023
Contact: SDMS - 645-3240