January 6 is celebrated Elegua and the Holy Child of Atocha, so many altars are adorned with toys and treats arranged for two deities syncretized in the same image of a mischievous child who brings luck in his hands.
In Santeria, due to the transculturation process and the need for African slaves to protect and safeguard their faith, the Santo Niño de Atocha is syncretized to Eleguá, on January 6, as happens on June 13, with Saint Anthony of Padua.
The proximity between Eleguá and the Santo Niño de Atocha in Santeria
Elegguá in the Yoruba religion is the owner of the roads and destiny, he is the one who opens or closes the path to happiness and his name means "the messenger prince."
It is the first protection, since it is he who opens the way to continue in religion. He is a warrior Osha who cares for the fate of those who pass through them.
The Orisha also takes care of the Ilé (house) of the person who owns it and helps their children to cope with and face the risky situations of life.
Meanwhile, the Santo Niño de Atocha is seen as a small Spanish pilgrim, in the image of the child Jesus. He is usually shown sitting in a small chair.
History of the Santo Niño de Atocha
The devout tradition of the Santo Niño de Atocha originates from Spain.aña, where the prayers and novenas for that saint begin with a prayer to Mary, Our Lady of Atocha, asking her permission to pray to her son.
The legend, as its name implies, arose in Atocha, a suburb of Madrid, where many men were in prison because of their faith.
There, the caliph issued an order to indicate that no one except children twelve and under could feed the prisoners.
Thus began the story that a young boy visited and fed captives who did not have young children in their family to bring him food.
No one knew who he was, but he came at night with a basket of groceries.
So those who had asked the Virgin of Atocha for a miracle wanted to confirm the identity of the little boy and when they arrived at the local monument in his honor, it is said that the shoes of the statue of the child Jesus were worn, worn from so much walking. to provide relief and comfort to the most disadvantaged.
Today, devotion to the Santo Niño de Atocha has grown not only in Spainaña, but has spread to many regions of America.
Prayer to the Holy Child of Atocha:
Wise Child of Atocha, general protector of all men, general shelter of the underdog, divine doctor of any disease. Powerful Child:
I greet you, I praise you on this day and I offer you these three Our Fathers and Hail Marys with Gloria Patri, in memory of that journey you made incarnate in the most pure entrails.añas of your most loving Mother, from that holy city of Jerusalem to Bethlehem.
For whose memories that I make on this day I ask you to grant me what I beg of you, for which I interpose these merits and accompany them with those of the choir of Cherubim and Seraphim, which are adorned with perfect wisdom, for which I hope, precious Child of Atocha, happy dispatch in what I beg and pretend, and I am certain that I will not leave you disconsolate, and I will achieve good luck and death, to get to accompany you.añarte in Bethlehem of Glory, Amen.
Prayer to Eleguá for protection (with translation)
Eshú Elegguá oga gbogbo na mirín ita algbana baba mi muulo na burukú nitosi le choncho kuelu kuikuo oki eos / ofo, cosieyo, cosi ku, cosi ano ni oruko mi gbogbo omonile fu kuikuo oducue, baba mi Elegguá
Owner of all four corners, major of the road, my father, take away the bad things to be able to walk with great health, that there is no sickness, that there is no loss, that there is no revolution, that there is no death. In the name of all the children of the house, I thank you very much, my father Eleggúa.
In Cuba, the Santo Niño de Atocha and Eleguá are part of the cult in Santeria, they are two powerful deities, the Saint and the Orisha, merciful children who shelter and protect us, and never, whatever happens, they abandon us.