Procession of the Penitent
Good Friday Morning


Today converted into a superb multitudinous and colorful procession, the Procession of the Penitent is one of those that is recorded in more remote times, perhaps the founding of Holy Week in Ciez. Thirteen Brotherhoods concur to recount in detail the path of Christ to Calvary and his Crucifixion, in which the Nazarenes of some of them parade with penitential crosses and even barefoot, in remembrance of the original penitential character of this parade. Despite its age, it is undoubtedly the procession whose composition has changed most significantly in the last twenty years, in which it has evolved from what could be considered, in a certain sense, a daytime version of the General Procession to the substantivity and uniqueness that it currently has as a beautifully represented episodic story, in which the chronology of the evangelical passages represented are exactly adjusted to what happened on the morning of that first Good Friday in which the Redeemer dragged the Cross to Calvary on the outskirts from Jerusalem. The usual structure for each Brotherhood that has already been mentioned is repeated in this procession (Script, Infant Tercio, Banner and Lanterns of Tercio, Nazarene Tercio, Anderos Tercio with the corresponding Paso and Band) until completing the narrative arc that ends with the death of Christ on the Cross.


The Big Day of Cieza begins with this procession, from the early hours a continuous wandering of Nazarenes, anderos and musicians announces that this day is not just any day; They go to the "House of the Saints" from where this participatory procession will depart, with a peculiar language in which light and color contrast with the drama represented in the Steps that tell of Jesus' Path to Calvary and the death of him on the cross. Undoubtedly, the immense luminosity of the Ciezano spring sky (unless there has been a bit of luck with the weather), together with the endless smells and fragrances that rise from the Segura river plain and the soft spring morning breeze, make up in perfect symbiosis, the ideal balm to sweeten the suffering that the processional images transmit to the viewer, who are recommended to watch the parade in the most central and popular streets of the city, the Paseo or the Plaza de España (points of safe representation of the popular “Caracola” of the Tercio Romano), where everyone shares this unrepeatable morning with friends and visitors. The name of Penitente is given to this parade due to the fact that the people who want it, procession after the image of the “Stmo. Cristo del Consuelo”, the main devotion among the ciezanos and the most traditional image of Good Friday, as a sign of prayer or thanksgiving. In the same way, and to delve into the penitential character of this morning, some Tercios of Nazarenes carry crosses on their shoulders in the image and likeness of Jesus Christ on their way to Golgotha.

Within the spectacular heritage that is put on the street that morning, the three works by José Hernández Navarro, the “Encounter of Jesus and Mary on Calle de la Amargura” (1999), “must be highlighted due to their extraordinary artistic quality,” Jesús en el Calvario” (2000), and “La Lanzada” (2006), and, in the most purely Salzillesque aesthetic, the group of “La Caída” (1973), perhaps the best ciezan work by Sánchez Lozano. On the other hand, it can well be said that the morning light sharpens in a portentous way the beauty of three Images that parade for the second and last time in Holy Week, such as “Santa Verónica”, “Ntro. P. Jesús Nazareno” and “Stma. Virgen de los Dolores”, which raises its desolate gaze on the Paseo to an intensely blue sky outlined by the unmistakable silhouette of the Watchtower. The most dramatic point of the story is reached, however, with the most recently incorporated Paso, the “Stmo. Christ of the Expiration”, by Yuste Navarro (2013), of sublime sculptural category, which draws a last and heartbreaking death rattle before dying at noon on Good Friday in Ciez.

At the collection of the Procession, on Good Friday they do not leave the streets of Cieza, since thousands of spectators and professionals will share a tablecloth and refreshment in the numerous restaurants, which fill terraces and sidewalks in an authentic popular coexistence that has on this day its highlight of each year.


Plaza Mayor, San Pedro, Cánovas del Castillo, Buitragos, San Sebastián, Esquina del Convento, Paseo (left margin), Salvador Seguí, Buen Suceso, Angostos, Tercia, Santo Cristo, Cánovas del Castillo and/or San Pedro, Plaza Mayor and/or Cartas.