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Who is San Lázaro? The miraculous old man

Who is San Lázaro

Saint Lazarus He is one of the most revered deities in Cuba. Figure of myths and legends, of miraculous cures and incredible stories.

En Saint Lazarus Blessed there is the confluence of two different characters, say Saint Lazarus, friend of Jesus and canonized by the Roman Catholic Church and Lazarus, a poor beggar represented as an old man who wears rags and uses a pair of crutches, with his legs covered in sores and surrounded by dogs.

The veneration of the saint is so old that it is described from the third century, when a great procession was already taking place to the tomb of Saint Lazarus in Jerusalem.

In Cuba, the cult extends for centuries and the devotees offer the saint great offerings and sacrifices, every day December 17, a day in which many fulfill promises and wear sackcloth in his honor.

Every year the pilgrimage to Sanctuary of San Lázaro to pay tribute to him, there are more than 15 believers who go there to thank, pray and meditate and implore his miracles.

Babalú Ayé, syncretism and religion

Saint Lazarus, a saint of the Catholic Church, is associated with Babalu Aye, orisha of the Yoruba religion worshiped in Cuban Santeria.

This African deity is identified with Old Lazarus as his devotees affectionately call him, because he is the healer of leprosy, smallpox, venereal diseases, of the skin and in general of plagues and misery.

Also to Babalu Aye tribute is paid to him on December 17, in the Yoruba pantheon. Cubans pray to him for cures, protection and general health.

Between the most typical offerings that are offered to the orisha on the altars that same day, there is roasted corn, roasted corncobs, burnt bread, fish and smoked hutía, coconuts, green coconuts and also bearded goats, guinea fowl, and doves are sacrificed.

San Lázaro and Babalú Ayé, prayers for health and well-being

In the Sanctuary located in El Rincón, the effigy is placed on the outskirts of the church, because as a rule the institution does not recognize the Saint Lazarus worshiped by devotees.

Near the statue, a fountain emanates a stream of water that, according to popular legends, was blessed by the deity.

Believers usually keep the miracles of Saint Lazarus y Babalu AyeBut so great is the devotion that families are known to bring huge offerings to the deity and many are those who make great sacrifices to implore cures.

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