The ceremony begins with a Roman Catholic prayer. Then three drummers begin to play syncopated rhythms. The attendees begin to dance around a tree in the center of the yard, moving faster and harder with the rising pulse of the beat. The priest draws sacred symbols in the dust with cornmeal, and rum is poured on the ground to honor the spirits. In Haiti these rituals are commonplace: Voodoo is the dominant religion.
It was easy to meld the two faiths, because there are many similarities between Roman Catholicism and voodoo. Participation in voodoo ritual reaffirms one's relationships with ancestors, personal history, community relationships—and the cosmos. >>continue