The Spanish festival of El Colacho was held yesterday, on June 26, 2011, in the town of Castrillo de Murcia near Burgos, Spain.
A man representing the devil and donning a bright saffron yellow suit with red, black and green decorative embellishments leaped over several babies during the festival of El Colacho, which is held on the first Sunday after Corpus Cristi, representing the devil taking away original sin from the newly born babies by leaping over them as well as ensuring them a safe passage throughout life and guarding against illness and evil spirits.
Known as “El Salto del Colacho” (the devil’s jump), the baby jumping practice goes back to 1620 and includes the Brotherhood of Santísimo Sacramento de Minerva, who organize the festivities and chase people around the town throughout the day!
The babies chosen were born within the past 12 months and needless to say, the parents have a lot of faith in the Colacho for not trampling their bundles of joy!
Deemed among the most dangerous of “religious” practices, the overtly pagan practice is being discouraged by the Vatican’s present pope Benedict!