Franciscan Brotherhood of Piety Virgin
Holy Wednesday | 22:00 h.
20.50 h. Reception. 21:00 h. Exercise of Darkness. 22:00 h. Procession: St. Agustin, Main Street, Leon Square, Eduardo Dato, Carmelitas Square, St. Teresa of Jesus, Hospital, Cervantes Square,St. Antolin Square, Salvino Sierra, Puentecillas (bridge), Sotillo, Rogativas, St. Romn Road, Parish of Beyond the River, St. Roman Road, Rogativas, Sotillo, Puentecillas (bridge), Salvino Sierra, St. Antolín Square, Old Main Street, St. Pedro, Inmaculada Square, Cathedral, Jorge Manrique, Juan de Castilla, Barrio Mier, Main Street, St. Agustin.
21:00 h. Exercise of Darkness. [23:05] Pray with the Holy Christ. Graveyard Beyond the River. [23:15] Prayer for the deceased. Parish of Beyond the River. [00:30] Penitencial Station. Cathedral. [01:00] Farewell. St. Agustin.
[22:00] Departure. St. Agustin. [22:25] Cervantes Square. [22:35] Puentecillas Bridge (one way). [00:00] Puentecillas Bridge (back way).
At nightfall, when darkness reigns on Holy Wednesday, inside the Church of St. Augustine, with the Christ Lord of Life and Death disposed in the center, it stars the Exercise of Darkness. The brothers, dressed in the Franciscan garb of their Brotherhood, break down each psalm while the candles are extinguished, one by one, until the church is in shadow. That's the moment when the rattles sound to give way to the blooming of light. Once the exercise is finished, the procession of Light and Darkness leaves the church, in order to reach the neighborhood of Allende el Río (Beyond the River). It passes in absolute silence through the oldest part of the city, on a route that, even, crosses the Puentecillas Bridge. Arrived at the Parish of Our Mother of Beyond the River, a Penitential Act is realized in memory of the deceased brothers. Once the act is over, the processional cortege is sent, again, and in the first hours of Holy Thursday, to the Church of St Agustin.
Holy Wednesday, central in Holy Week, is the day of surrender and betrayal. This day recalls the moment when Judas, one of the twelve disciples of the Lord, agrees with the enemies of Jesus and offers to deliver it in exchange for 30 silver coins. It is the beginning of the deadly plot. The Office of Darkness is the liturgical ceremony carried out by the Roman Catholic Apostolic Church on Holy Wednesday at dusk. It is the same prayer of the Liturgy of the Hours -invitation, lauds, vespers and complete- that is done every day in the morning, afternoon and evening, but unified for Holy Thursday and Good Friday in a prayer on Holy Wednesday at come the afternoon; It is ahead of Wednesday so that those who pray do not miss prayer because of the other rites of Holy Week. In this office all the lights of the temple have to be extinguished and next to the altar there must be a tenebrario or candlestick with fifteen candles or yellow candles that represent the eleven apostles that remained after the betrayal of Iscariot, the three marias -María Salomé, María of Cleophas and Mary Magdalene - and the Virgin Mary, represented by a candle more prominent than the others. The candles are extinguished one after another after each psalm so that in the end is lit only the candle that stands out as the death of the Redeemer approaches. Upon reaching the last candle, the Miserere is sung and the candle is placed in the back of the altar, hiding it, symbolizing the entrance of Jesus into the grave and the permanence of the Church in expectation of the Light that will emerge in the Easter Vigil. After the "Miserere" the clergy and the faithful produce a noise of rattles and rattles, which ceases dramatically when the light of the candle hidden behind the altar appears, to simulate the convulsions and natural upheavals that happened to nature when Jesus Christ died. This Office presents all the characteristics of the funeral: psalms, antiphons and funeral and lamentation responsories, omitting all kinds of hymn or doxology, without musical accompaniments and with the altar naked, the images covered and in an absolute darkness, except the candles. But he also remembers the Passion and agony of the Lord. The PROCESSION OF LIGHT AND DARKNESS has its origin in the procession of Piety and Reconciliation that, in 2008 and 2010, visited the neighborhood of 'Allende el Rio' (Beyond the River), recovering a tour of the oldest part of the city that even crossed the Puentecillas Bridge. After a series of discussions in the Brotherhood, it was decided, in 2012, to institute a procession that made that fixed route every year. To do this, the theme of the Office of Darkness was collected, taking the act out before the procession to then go to the parish of Our Mother of Allende the River to make a prayer in memory of deceased brothers.