Holy week in Cagliari

Holy Week ceremonies in Cagliari (Sa Chida Santa) take place in the streets of the historical city centre. They are organised by three ancient Arch-confraternities who re-enact the most suggestive moments of the Passion, the death and the Resurrection of Christ. The celebrations begin on the Friday before Palm Sunday with the Procession of the Mysteries (Is Misterius): seven simulacrums representing the moments of the Passion are laid to rest in seven churches, symbolising the seven stations of the Cross.

On Wednesday the sisters of the Holy Crucifix wash and perfume the statue of Christ to prepare it for the Crucifixion rite, known as S’Incravamentu, which takes place on Holy Thursday. This rite is followed by a long procession in which the simulacrum of the Patron Saint of the city, Sant’Efisio, is dressed in mourning and carried through the streets of the city. The most evocative moment is the funeral procession, known as S’Interru, in which the dead Christ is carried to the Santa Maria Cathedral, followed by the statue of the Virgin Mary of Sorrows. The celebrations conclude on Easter Sunday with S’Incontru, which is the meeting of the statues of the Virgin Mary no longer dressed in mourning and that of Christ Risen. They bow to each other three times marking the commencement of the Easter celebrations.