About fifteen years ago, my husband and I went to Mexico several times to study Spanish and Mexican culture. Over a couple of years, we learned about and experienced Christmas, Holy Week, and Día de los Muertos (Day of the Dead/All Souls’ Day). As a Quaker who doesn’t practice holy days, I was fascinated to learn some of the theology and tradition surrounding these holidays. I was especially drawn to Day of the Dead.
Many traditions and practices surround the last day of October and first two days of November to honor ancestors, friends, and family who have died. Creating an ofrenda, or altar, is a practice we’ve adopted to remember and pay tribute to those who’ve gone before us.
Here’s what ours looks like this year (including a portrait of our dear dog Buddy, who died in the spring). What do you do to recognize this time of the year that many believe the veil between the living and dead becomes quite thin?
*Afterthoughts are my blog version of a practice followed in some Quaker meetings. After meeting for worship ends, people continue in silence for a few more minutes during which they’re invited to share thoughts or reflect on the morning’s worship. I’ve adopted the form here for last-day-of-the-month brief reflections on headlines, quotes, books, previous posts, maybe even bumper stickers and refrigerator magnets.