In Cartagena, processions are propense to take place at night and in the early morning, what implies a proper character, a communion with pain and martyrdom which is also represented. A procession which starts in the street in broad daylight cannot be compared with another that starts in the temple when night is so deep as a wound. If anyone could be in different places at the same time so as not to miss anything, one would be the street: getting immersed in all happening around, witnessing the magnificent sense of the spectacle of this millenary city, feeling in our stomach the hit of rich music, attending dazzled a perfect sync of processions which exhibit their illuminated thrones over the crowd. Another place would be the sky, an elevated place where we could check the real dimension of what is happening down there, hear the uproar softened by distance, sudden applauses or the winding walk of the honoring images around the city.
In Cartagena these days are lived so intensively that it is perfectly known how to transmit it to foreigners. Even if the aim of the Holy Week is one, it is divided into several demonstrations. Diatribes between marrojos - members of the Real e Ilustre Cofradía de Nuestro Padre Jesús Nazareno (brotherhood of our father Jesús Nazareno)- and californios - members of the Pontificia, Real e Ilustre Cofradía de Nuestro Padre Jesús en el Doloroso Paso del Prendimiento y Esperanza de la Salvación de las Almas (brotherhood of Our Father Jesus)- have a spirit which goes beyond mere competition. They are Brotherhoods proud of their secular past and saying that they divide the city to join it more is not contradictory. But this is not all. In fact, this is the beginning. Cartagena and the Holy Week have other reasons to be proud. They are festivities lived intensely. And a visitor, sometimes astonished, other times surprised, almost always excited, can see that processional statues have the quality and signature of the best workshops of religious images makers. These workshops have reached over the years a fame that the History of Art has testified. Images recovered from wood by the expert hands of masters like Benlliure, Sánchez Lozano, Salzillo, González Moreno, Abascal, Ardil, García Mengual or Capuz. The entire city goes out to the street on the first great day, Friday of Sorrows, dedicated to its patron saint, a holy card of the Virgin of Charity at the foot of the cross which heralds the intense following ten days.