Devotion to Saint Lazarus in Cuba it is as strong as the adoration of the Virgen de la Caridad del Cobre, Patroness of the island.
This veneration is also linked to the cult of Santeria, since the figure of this Catholic saint is related to that of the Orisha Babalú Ayé, African deity of plagues and ailments in the Yoruba pantheon.
The New Testament narrates the parable of the rich man and poor Lazarus, the rich man and the beggar, who was also a leper and walked with wounds on his legs accompaniedañado of his faithful friends, the dogs.
It is because of her that poor Lazarus' condition as a leper made him the patron saint of leprosy and disease.
A parable of Jesus of Nazareth relates that poor Lazarus reaches the glory of heaven while the rich man is condemned to hell.
Saint Lazarus of Bethany, was the biblical character who lived in Bethany, a town on the outskirts of Jerusalem.
The Scriptures say that Jesus stayed in his house at least three times and finally revived him, which is why his name is frequently used as a synonym for resurrection.
Lazarus is an Israeli name that means God is my help.
It is said that after Lazarus died, Jesus wept, contemplating the mourning of Mary and Martha, the sisters of the deceased.
And it is that Lázaro gave his life for his faith and for his people and was martyred on December 17, a date that today and fundamentally in Cuba has immense religious significance.
We pay great devotion to Saint Lazarus How is the saint venerated in Cuba?
In Cuba, the figure of San Lázaro is associated with that of the Orisha Babalú Ayé and both are dedicated to one of the greatest samples of collective faith present on the Island today.
The devotees of Saint Lazarus offer him great displays of devotion and even sacrifices, fulfilling the promises made to the saint.
Every December 17, in its celebration:
Many of his devotees dress in sackcloth and arrive at the San Lázaro National Shrine located in the town of Rincón, current Boyeros municipality in the Province of Havana, center of the cult of the deity.
- There they all come to venerate the effigy that is placed on the outskirts of the church, because the institution does not recognize the beggar Saint Lazarus that the devotees venerate.
- Also there in the sanctuary is a fountain that emanates a stream of water, which is religiously believed to be blessed by the deity.
- Many after falling on their knees and praying fervently to Saint Lazarus, come to wash with this miraculous water and not only to heal diseases, but injustices and sadness.
- At 12 pm on December 16, all the devotees fall silent before the advent of Saint Lazarus Day, after which the most important mass of the day is celebrated.
- Then the parish priests of the Church listen to the devotees and continue attending to the penitents, trying to alleviate their physical and spiritual pain.
- The more than 10 believers who come to the Sanctuary between December 15, 16 and 17, never come to venerate Saint Lazarus empty-handed.
- In syncretism always with the figure of the Orisha, the saint is offered flowers, most of them lilac gladioli, white and purple candles, medals and other objects with the image of Saint Lazarus.
But offerings of food and fruits are also brought to him, coins are deposited in a cloth or basket that acts as a piggy bank before the effigy, and alms are given to the poor to honor the saint and his status as a beggar.
Afterwards, they pray at the feet of the saint asking for health and well-being and thanking his blessings.
We pray to the miraculous Saint Lazarus for health and peace How do we do it?
Most Cubans, believers or not, have heard about the promises to Saint Lazarus to help people heal and regain health.
The legend around the saint has grown, despite the fact that many penitents keep the miracle he has performed for them a secret.
However, many families save throughout the year in order to give generously to Saint Lazarus, because they are immensely grateful for his blessings.
Devotees from all provinces, even from other countries, come to El Rincón to fulfill promises to Old Lazarus.
Saint Lazarus is considered the patron saint of the poor and the sick, despite the fact that most of the prayers that are made to him are based on cures.
Old man Lázaro is asked to:
- Restore health and come to body and spiritual peace
- Heal the person who prays or a family member or loved one
- Protect from diseases and ailments that are suffered
- Bring home prosperity and peace of mind
- Take away poverty, hardship and misfortune
Prayer to Saint Lazarus, patron of the poor and the sick
Many of the prayers addressed to Saint Lazarus by his faithful devotees include requests for the well-being and health not only of family and loved ones, but of all people in general.
They also include the petition to remove poverty and need.
- Light a purple or white candle in the name of the saint.
- You can place purple flowers to venerate him or other offerings (at the end of the article we leave some works at the foot of Lazarus)
- So we pray to Saint Lazarus to bless us and keep us away from the shadow of illness.
Dear patron and assistant to the poor and sick
My Father, Saint Lazarus Blessed, you who guide your faithful on the path of well-being
With this prayer I ask for your help, and with the help of the Holy Spirit, protect me during illness or health.
Saint Lazarus give me the strength to overcome all the temptations in the world. In the name of the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit
Saint Lazarus, friend of Jesus Christ and brother and protector of those who suffer! You who knew the pain of the disease
Glorious Patron of the Poor, I call you to remove from my house the shadow of sadness and need
may the good spirits help me and come to my aid, when I suffer from some evil or am in danger
In you I put my faith to save me and give comfort to my great ills
So that in your name the evil spirits may move away from me
Give me father, your immense protection against all evil, that sadness never comes to me and that pain and disease go away
So be it, amen