International Christian Concern
From a distance, the dressed figure can vaguely be seen as the flicker of lit candles marks the religious procession to her shrine decorated with crosses and dozens of other saint figures surrounding her elaborate altar. From afar, the image seems to be just another mere replica of the patron saint of Mexico, the Virgin of Guadalupe (the Virgin Mary), but as the neon lights and lit candles draw closer to her shrine, a skeleton dressed as a bride carrying a scythe is revealed for all to see.
Every year on November 1, thousands of faithful worshippers gather in the streets of Tepito at the stroke of midnight to pay their respects and make their homage walk to a saint both feared and hated by the Catholic Church.
These faithful worshippers, some having journeyed hundreds of miles, are about to offer their burnt sacrifices and gifts to Santa Muerte (Saint Death), a personification of death and the goddess of all that is evil.
What’s more, her followers erect homemade altars and offer lit candles to her worship — many offering fruit, alcohol and flowers at her feet in the hope that she will grant their desires. However, her extreme devotion requires more than just plates of food and tequila. For many, the sacrifices and offerings require a blood price.
With dark worship comes dark offerings, and this is evidently true with Santa Muerte. The sacrifices and offerings made at her feet have become barbaric and diabolic. In many instances, heads of victims have served as burnt sacrifices to Santa Muerte. In exchange for protection and victory, drug cartels and criminals will drag their victims to the feet of Santa Muerte and deliver their blood right before her shrine...