La Negrita, Costa Rica’s most sacred Holy Relic, known for its healing powers, it draws an annual pilgrimage to one of the most famous church’s in Central America, The Basilica of Los Angeles in Cartago, Costa Rica.
Every year on August 2, feast day of the Virgin of the Angels, thousands of Costa Ricans make the journey to celebrate Costa Rica’s Patron Saint, La Negrita.
The massive Basílica de Nuestra Señora de Los Ángeles, is home to the statue of the Black Madonna known as La Negrita, who supposedly had great healing powers and is surrounded by legends and lore. The faithful, the curious and the sick make the journey to her statue in search of a miracle from La Negrita on the day of the Virgin of the Angels (August 2). All Costa Rican’s celebrate this unique holiday.
Legend has it that in Costa Rica, the Black Madonna statue was discovered by a Costa Rican girl in 1635, who was looking for firewood. Upon finding the statue, shaped like a doll, on top of a stone, she brought it home and when she awoke the next morning it was gone. Returning to the stone, there was statue. This, according to legend happened three times. In some telling, the little girl told the residing priest, Father Baltazar de Grado, and the same thing happened to the priest as well. Since then the legends have grown, and persisted.
La Negrita became the Patron Saint of Costa Rica in the year 1824 and was visited by the late Pope John Paul II in 1983.
The stone statue she found it is now kept in a backroom in the basilica and is revered as a sacred relic and Holy symbol of inspiration for all Tico’s, and visited daily throughout the year by locals and visitors alike.
Another belief is that the statue of the Black Madonna fell from the sky in a blaze of fire and was found by an indigenous girl.
Although many beliefs surround the Black Madonna, August 2, Feast day of the Virgin of the Angels, at the Basilica of Los Angeles in Cartago, is the most celebrated holidays in Costa Rica.
The Costa Rica News (TCRN)
San Jose Costa Rica