Why Holy Week in Secular Spain?

A post from my wife, Jazmin, on celebrating Easter in Secular Spain.

Olivers Travel All Over

Queridos amigos,


One of the first statistics I read about Spain was that about 90% of the poplulation hold to the Roman Catholic faith, yet this seems far from the truth. Every time I visit the Lugo Santa Maria Cathedral, it’s nearly empty, even when attending a mass service. I see more tourists than devoted believers.


Upon asking my fellow teachers, they told me that the church counts all baby baptisms as induction into the Catholic faith, though families rarely go to church afterwards. Since baby baptisms and first communions are a cultural tradition, but it’s usually the extent of the Catholic faith here.

El mundo notes that about half of Spaniards ages 18-34 are atheists or non-believers (an age group facing nearly 40% unemployment as well).

So in anticipating Semana Santa, or Holy Week, I couldn’t help but wonder…Why would a population of so many atheists celebrate Holy…

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