The city of Murcia has experienced this Thursday afternoon the first rogatory procession of the Virgen de la Fuensanta through the streets of Murcia together with other images. During the itinerary five penitential stations will be carried out and the Cristo de la Salud, the Cristo del Rescate and Nuestro Padre Jesús Nazareno will go out to meet her.
Precisely, the last time that the patron saint of the city of Murcia and the Jesús Nazareno did not make a procession of these characteristics together was in 1886, 137 years ago. Moreover, this is the first time that the images of passion (Cristo de la Salud, Cristo del Rescate and Nuestro Padre Jesús Nazareno) did not parade after two years of pandemic and one more due to the rain.
As a result, some three thousand people accompanied the Virgin of Fuensanta in the rogation and the different penitential stations. For this occasion, the patron saint of the city of Murcia wore an 18th century silk robe in Lenten purple, as well as the new rake given to her by the Caballeros de la Fuensanta (Knights of Fuensanta). A few minutes after 18.00, the image of Nuestra Señora de la Fuensanta left through the door of San José of the Cathedral of Murcia, where she has been for the last two years, as her traditional pilgrimage back to her Sanctuary could not take place due to health reasons. The first station of penitence has been made in front of the door of the Escuela Superior de Arte Dramático de Murcia, place where it will meet the images of the Fuensanta with the image of the Cristo de la Salud.
There, the image of the Christ of the Rescue has joined the procession, after the banners of the brotherhoods and in front of the Knights of the Fuensanta who are part of the procession. The image of Christ of the Rescue turned to face the image of Our Lady of Fuensanta and prayers were said for peace in Ukraine. After the bishop has released the incense on both images, the statue of Christ of the Rescue has returned to the parish of San Juan Bautista, while that of Our Lady of Fuensanta has continued to the parish of Carmen. At that point, the Fuensanta has recovered its usual transit through the city of Murcia.
The image of Nuestro Padre Jesús waited in the Plaza Martínez Tornel for the Virgen de la Fuensanta. After being perfumed with incense, the image of Our Lady of Fuensanta and then that of Our Father Jesus, the procession continued to the Plaza del Cardenal Belluga. The image of Our Father Jesus turned again towards the statue of Our Lady of Fuensanta and prayed for those who are still suffering the consequences of the pandemic. The procession entered the cathedral with the national anthem played by the music band, which was played again from the cathedral organ when the image of Our Lady of Fuensanta crossed the door of San José.
The images of Nuestra Señora de la Virgen de la Fuensanta and Nuestro Padre Jesús have been placed on both sides of the presbytery.
The ‘Morenica’ usually comes down in pilgrimage from her sanctuary on the mountain twice a year, the last time being on 5 March 2020. Due to the coronavirus pandemic, the patron saint of Murcia has not yet returned and remains in the cathedral. As is tradition, the city has been warned of the departure of the Virgin by the ringing of bells from the cathedral tower, which tolled again at 17.00 hours.