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Coronavirus

Spain’s Seville Settles for Subdued Easter Week

SEVILLE, Spain — Few Roman Catholics in devout southern Spain would have ever imagined an April without the pomp and ceremony of Holy Week processions.

With the coronavirus pandemic unremitting, they will miss them for a second year.

The streets of Seville and other Spanish cities again went without Palm Sunday, Maundy Thursday and Good Friday celebrations marking the life, death and resurrection of Christ. The infection rate for COVID-19 is still too high for groups to be allowed to gather.

For 50-year-old Roberto Ruiz, the extravagant Semana Santa, or Holy Week, processions mark the cycle of time in Seville. Without them, he feels unsettled.

“You don’t fully wake up if Palm Sunday isn’t celebrated,” he said. “The year neither begins nor ends. This is like being trapped in Groundhog Day. Every day is the same as the rest. The feeling is that of a year which has been lost.”

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