Visually impaired faithful explore Easter statues by fingertip in Ronda

By Thomson Reuters Feb 26, 2024 | 12:34 PM

RONDA, Spain (Reuters) – Amanda Carreno knew Spain’s Holy Week processions by the smell of the flowers, incense and candle wax or the sounds of trumpets and drums, but touching the centuries-old statues that are carried on elaborate floats gave it a whole new dimension.

The visually impaired 26-year-old psychologist on Monday got the opportunity to touch the venerated statues of the Christ and Virgin Mary that will be paraded by the Brotherhood of Nuestro Padre Jesus Nazareno in the southern city of Ronda during the Easter celebrations.

“I am a devout believer and that is what prevails, faith and illusion and being able to touch what you have tried to imagine at other times,” she said, calling the experience “unforgettable”.

Jose Manuel Lorenzo, 64, the leader of the group that organises the processions and started the initiative of “showing” the figures to the faithful with visual impairments, was impressed by how delicately they inspected the statues.

“I didn’t think that the emotion would be so strong … it seems like they were touching God and that’s why they treat him with such care,” he said.

(Reporting by Jon Nazca, Writing by Emma Pinedo, Editing by Andrei Khalip and Alison Williams)