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Barbies in Holy Week

by sanmigueltimes
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At the beginning of a tour on the day of the Mary Altars the Oratorio had just ended mass and the masses came out carrying images of Mary.  Also present were a stream of Barbie sized images of all the folks present at Jesus’ death.  This was fortunate on two counts.  One was I was able to describe each person’s role to my tour group.  Secondly, I recognized the artist’s work as being the grandson of my favorite dance student, Lupita.

Later that afternoon I was at Lupita’s house and here her grandson had closed off the street to traffic and spent the day displaying his art.  I realized it was a grand opportunity to identify folks you’ll see during Holy Week leading up to Easter.

The first images are of Jesus himself.  One is Ecce Homo where the crowd chooses to free Barabbas, the murderer, over Jesus.  His life sized image is the oldest statue we have in town.

lord of the column

Next there is a sample sized version of the Lord of Column, the lad I help carry about on Good Friday.  Though he looks thin being whipped while leaning over a column all I can tell you is the Last Supper was a buffet as Jesus is surprisingly heavy.  The life size version of Lord of Column arrived in town last Sunday morning.

The encounter follows, where Jesus sees Mary and bows his head in embarrassment not wanting his mother to see him this way.

Following his death, Jesus is placed in glass coffin Snow White would re-use in later years.


Behind Mary you’ll find St. John, Jesus’ favorite apostle and whom he leaves his mother in the care of.  John is normally easy to tell in art as he is the only apostle without a beard and frequently confused, in art, with Mary Magdalene.


Mary Magdalene was Jesus’ gal pal, a wealthy woman from Magdala.  In a Barbie version, Mary Magdalene is easy to spot in the Crucifixion since she is so bereft her hair is seen as being in desperate need of a brush.


Veronica is the woman with the veil that wipes Jesus’ face with him leaving his image on her veil (Veronica means veil).

Other gals normally featured are Jesus’ aunt, Mary of Clopas and his best pals, outside the apostles, Martha and Mary, sisters of Lazarus.

nick and joe

The lads at the end of the procession are Nicodemus and Joseph of Arimathea, who removed Jesus’ body from the cross for burial.

barbie holy week 1

Notably absent is Jesus’ step-father, St. Joseph, Mary’s parents (St. Ana and St. Joachim) and her cousin, St. Elizabeth (mother of the also missing St. John the Baptist).  For this reason they are all believed to have pre-deceased Jesus.

Article and photos by Joseph Toone



Joseph Toone is the Historical Society’s short-story award winning author of the SMA Secrets book series.  All books in the series are Amazon bestsellers in Mexican Travel and Holidays.  Toone is SMA’s expert and TripAdvisor’s top ranked historical tour guide telling the stories behind what we do in today’s SMA.  Visit HistoryAndCultureWalkingTours.com, and JosephTooneTours.com.


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