Sensuntepeque With the Largest Street Carpet in El Salvador During the Procession of the Holy Burial

By Eddie Galdamez  |  Mar 29th, 2024
Holy Friday in Sensuntepeque. Image by Alcaldia Sensuntepeque.City of Sensuntepeque. Image by Alcaldia de Sensuntepeque.

Creating street carpets for the Holy Burial procession on Good Friday is one of the most symbolic traditions in El Salvador’s Holy Week celebrations.

The highly decorated street rugs during Holy Week are one of the traditions and expressions of faith that many Salvadorans still keep alive, specifically in cities such as Sensuntepeque.

Each year during Holy Week, parishioners in Sensuntepeque, Cabañas, craft the largest street carpet in El Salvador. This vibrant masterpiece, made with salt and bright colors, is 200 meters long and features a unique design year after year.

SEE ALSO: Holy Week in El Salvador: A Vibrant Celebration of Faith and Tradition

For over 40 years, this traditional carpet in Sensuntepeque has been a cherished tradition, renowned for its exquisite decorations, vibrant colors, and captivating images.

Preparations for the long street carpet begin two to three months in advance, involving the collection of materials and the design. Around 900 pounds of salt and various pigments, including imported ones, are used in its creation.

Ramiro Gallegos, the coordinator of the street carpet, explained that the concept of this rug originated 43 years ago with a local family. As more people joined the project over time, it grew into the largest in the country.

Families within the community contribute ideas for images based on their devotions, with each family playing a role in shaping the collective design. These diverse contributions culminate in the intricate and meaningful pattern of the street carpet.

Additionally, it is customary to incorporate dedications in the design, reflecting significant national or international events. For instance, past carpets have commemorated events like the Twin Towers attack in New York. In 2021, the dedication was to health personnel concerning the COVID-19 pandemic.

SEE ALSO: Exploring El Salvador Culture: Embracing Vibrant Customs and Traditions with Warm-hearted People

The Sensuntepeque Holy Week street carpet is a revered tradition spanning over four decades, showcasing intricate designs crafted with salt and vibrant pigments.

Renowned as one of El Salvador’s most extensive carpets, it attracts local and foreign visitors with its rich cultural significance.

Sensuntepeque is in the department of Cabañas, about 85 kilometers from San Salvador and 105 kilometers from the international airport.