GOOD FRIDAY    

Order of the procession
The groups
The lamps
The children
The music
The confraternities
The prelates
The Dead Christ
Our Lady of Sorrows

 

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Our Lady of Sorrows

Our Lady of Sorrows, who closes the Good Friday procession (followed only by the large black municipal flag) is not a real statue but a set of different parts, precisely, matching legs and skirt, rough bust with attached movable arms and head, which is painted like the hands and feet. It is all dressed and covered with a luxurious black silk cloak embroidered with gold and silver. Two "costumes" are preserved, the week day one in which the statue is displayed all year round, and the festive one. The current one, which dates back to the early 1800s, was restored for the second bicentenary in 1998, preserving the original embroidery in gold thread cut out and sewn onto the new black silk dress. A similar process was already implemented in 1909. Consistently with the traditional iconography of Our Lady of Sorrows, at the centre of the chest there is a golden heart pierced by seven swords that correspond to the seven sorrows of the Blessed Virgin; they, in turn, refer to the passage of St. Luke's Gospel ("Yea, a sword shall pierce through thy own soul also").

The statue is cited in the documents only in 1747, and only from 1775 was it placed in the niche specially created in the apse of the Church of St. John (the date is still legible under the projection of the niche, outside the building). It is carried in procession on a rich “stand” that certainly dates back to the 18th century, since it is cited in a list of works either donated or ordered by Brother Antonio Maria Baroffio in 1783. The corners present four weeping angels with instruments of Passion (pliers and hammer, sponge and spear). The large bouquets of flowers that are always placed at the feet of the Blessed Virgin on the stand are designed to conceal the battery for the lamp that lights it up during the procession.

The right hand of the statue has fingers sculptured to simulate the act of gently holding something. During the last century the delicate silk handkerchief was replaced by a specific rosary of Our Lady of Sorrows, made up of seven series of seven beads in memory of her Seven Sorrows. The current one is in silver filigree and can be dated as early 1900. The other hand has been sculptured to obtain the palm (maschile) turned upwards in the gesture of request to God but it has been “turned” vertically to support the scapular of the confraternity, namely two fabric rectangles with glued images and embroidery, connected by two long parallel ribbons to be worn on the shoulders (scapulae), with a figure on the chest and another on the back. To prevent it from shaking too much during the procession, it has been weighted down, reduced and recomposed to present both decorated faces on one side.

Over the past two centuries several items of jewellery have been donated to the statue especially with historical and devotional value; hence, to be preserved intact as far as possible. Moreover, some have been adapted to be “worn” by the statue, starting from the silver crown that is also used to conceal the pin that fixes the heavy cloak to the slightly tilted head, to the bracelets, earrings and broaches, necklaces, very discretely chosen by the women appointed to dress her.