Colombian church group goes red, white & blue
By Bill Parry
A Sunnyside church group with Colombian roots held its annual “Lord of Miracles” procession through the northern section of the neighborhood Saturday.
This year’s fiesta, which had about 150 parade goers, had a very different look to it. Instead of it being a purely South American spectacle, marchers were awash in the Stars & Stripes. The parade, known in Spanish as Al Senor de los Milagros, is devoted to a centuries old painting of Christ on a wall in Peru.
Dozens of young flag bearers followed a jeep carrying a crucifix surrounded by a bed of flowers. They were followed by the Sunnyside Drum Corps, parents and the rest of the congregation.
The Holy Spirit Church, which doesn’t have its own building, is affiliated with the All Saints Episcopal Church on 46th St.
The church leaders’ goal was to link the children’s American heritage with their parents’ Colombian background. “The majority of our kids were born here,” said Paula Noriega, a church parishioner.
“The parents were born in Colombia and they’re trying to teach the importance of patriotism in America to their kids.” She added that it was the first time that they’ve marched with American flags.
A police escort closed down traffic while the procession passed, and curious onlookers were drawn to the sounds of the Drum Corps. “It’s really good to see the kids carrying the American flags,” said Brian O’Connor, a spectator. “You don’t see something like this everyday.”