Christmas is coming and with it the birth of Jesus Christ. For many Antigüeños, the
meaning of Christmas is more than buying gifts and having dinner with their family, many
people start celebrating Christmas since the beginning of December with various activities
and traditions. One of the most important traditions are “las posadas” that take place in
Antigua and its villages. Each posada go from house to house of Catholic families turning
into small parties to wait for the birth of Jesus.
(Photo: Cofradía de Nstra. Sra. del Rosario y San José 2016-2018)
The history of las posadas make reference and symbolize the pilgrimage of Joseph and
Mary on their departure from Nazareth to the city of Bethlehem, to await the birth of Jesus,
that is why this tradition was introduced in the sixteenth century by Brother Peter from San
José de Betancourt, who traveled the cobbled streets of Antigua Guatemala on December
24 accompanied by Catholic parishioners. The custom was to take a small procession with
the images of the Virgin, Saint Joseph and the Child Jesus, and this is what people do in las
posaditas nowadays, the families accompany the procession with Catholic Christmas songs
and at the end the small procession stays in a house until the next day.
Las posaditas start every December 15 th and ends on 24 th to wait for the birth of Jesus, so
if you are in Antigua this month you should go catch a posadita! you can find them every
night, they usually go around Antigua after 6 in the afternoon.