09.09.2016 - The procession...

...provides us with a picture of our own lives: The people of God in transit. What and Who is their destination? This persistent, age-old question is more pertinent than ever today.The 2019 Hanswijk ...

02.08.2016 - Procession 2019: Sunday the 19th of May 2019


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Pictures of previous editions

The procession

The Hanswijk procession is a fascinating blend of popular and religious traditions, aesthetic and artistic components and the evocation of historical events. Adults will particularly appreciate the drama, music and dance, while children may be especially impressed by the horses, or think the whole thing is a great way of experiencing a history lesson 'live'.

No-one who takes the trouble to come to Mechelen will go away disappointed: there is something to appeal to everyone. Who can fail to enjoy the superb historical costumes that take us back to the time of the dukes of Burgundy with the Knights of the Golden Fleece and the members of the Great Council? Who can be immune to the charm of Margaret of Austria, who enjoyed going hawking with the nobles of the rich Habsburg period? And then there are the artistic gems of past centuries: the reliquary of St Rumbold and the statue of Our Lady of Hanswijk with its brilliant restored cloak and Spanish skirt.

Numerous figures are also brought to life in the Biblical section of the procession: Moses, who would not let the Egyptian Pharaoh stand in his way, Mary, who in all simplicity was willing to become the mother of God's Son, Peter, the forceful but impetuous apostle, Pilate, and the Roman soldiers who put Jesus to death, and the moving encounter between the risen Lord Jesus and Mary Magdalene...

Anyone who has the idea that the Hanswijk procession is just a tedious parade that you watch pass-by is completely mistaken. The scintillating waters of the Dijle ushering in the legendary arrival of the statue of Mary, the numerous choirs, musicians playing heraldic trumpets and other instruments, the dynamic enactment of various scenes through a combination of song, word and dance on and around the floats, the endearing sight of the baby Jesus on the nativity float, the spontaneity of the numerous young participants, the interaction between the children and the sheep, donkeys and horses in the procession ... all of these elements make the Hanswijk procession a captivating occasion which cannot fail to enthral!