What You Need for Your Altar

Here are some of the important things that you might want to have in your altar in order to guide your visitors and help them have a safe return home.

Día Altar SistersCopal: The copal is used to drive away evil spirits so that the soul of your loved is able to come without any danger. The copal is what inspires prayer and praise. It is a fragrance of reverence. You can also use incense, something that the Spaniards introduced upon their arrival to Mexico.

Water: Water calms the thirst of the souls when they arrive and gives them strength on their journey back. In some cultures, water symbolizes the purity of the soul.

Candles: The flame from the candle symbolizes “the light,” faith, and hope. The flame guides the souls with its shimmering flame so that they can return home. It also lights their return home. In various indigenous communities, each candle represents one person. If you place four candles in the form of a cross, it represents the four cardinal directions, so that the soul can find his or her way home.

Salt: Salt purifies the body of the deceased so that his or her body will not decay and is therefore able to return the following year.

Food: The ancestors prepared beans, tortillas, sweet tamales and atole. Actually, what is prepared are the dishes that your loved one liked the most before they died.

Flowers: Flowers represents a time of celebration. They adorn and offer their scent to the altar. Because of it, they will be happy when they leave. Some of the flowers used on the altars are the marigold and the wallflower. Baby’s breath cannot be missing from your altar if you are welcoming children. They represent purity and tenderness.

The Photograph: The photograph is to remember your loved one.

Liquor: The liquor is to remember all the enjoyable times while alive.

The izcuitle Dog: For the children there is a dog called izcuitle. This dog will make them happy to come to the banquet. The izcuitle helps the souls cross the fast-flowing river Chiconauhuapan, which is the only way to get to Mictlan, the world where the souls go after death.

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Building Your Personal Ofrenda

Wikipedia offers some basics on building an ofrenda. More information can be found at https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ofrenda

An ofrenda (Spanish: “offering“) is a collection of objects placed on a ritual altar during the annual and traditionally Mexican Día de Muertos celebration. An ofrenda, which may be quite large and elaborate, is usually created for an individual person who has died and is intended to welcome him/her to the altar setting. A common format for an ofrenda contains three levels or tiers. The topmost tier identifies the dead person who is being invited to the altar, frequently with photos of the deceased, along with, images of various saints, statuettes of the Virgin Mary, crucifixes, etc. which are positioned in a retablo which forms the back of the altar;[1] on the second tier are things placed to encourage the dead to feel at home and welcome: the deceased person’s favorite food items might go here, including such things as mole, candy, pan dulce, and especially a sweet bread called pan de muerto. For deceased adults, the ofrenda might include a bottle or poured shot glasses of tequila or mezcal, while if the deceased is a child here might be placed a favorite toy. The bottom-most tier almost always contains lit candles, and might also have a washbasin, mirror, soap, and a towel so that the supposed spirit of the deceased can see and refresh themselves upon arrival at the altar. Throughout the altar are placed calaveras (decorated candied skulls made from compressed sugar) and bright orange and yellow marigolds (cempazuchitl), an Aztec flower of the dead. Ofrendasare constructed in the home as well as in village cemeteries and churches.


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2016 Santa Rosa Dia De Los Muertos Calendar

2016 Santa Rosa Dia De Los Muertos Calendar

2016 Calendar for Santa Rosa Dia De Los Muertos Celebration
November, 1 & 2 a the Santa Rosa Courthouse Sq.

You can purchase the Día de los Muertos 2016 Calendar for $6.00 or 2 for $10.00 Kindred Fair Trade Handcrafts and Chelino’s Restautrant

Calendars are available at the following sites:

Your tax deductable donation will go to the Santa Rosa Día de los Muertos fund to pay for the costs of future celebrations.

We need local merchants to contact us if you are interested in helping us continue the sales of the calendars. Thanks for your help.

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