Customs of Baptism and Cutting of Hair in Sangarara

The inhabitants of this place have the tradition and custom of performing baptisms and a first haircut in a particular way, very different from any other place.

Before choosing the sponsors, they think carefully who will be the best example for their daughter or son. Once decided, they visit the house of the chosen ones taking, a great snack that they prepare; it contains: roasted hens, baked guinea pigs, roast pork,all this in order that they accept to be the sponsors of christening and haircut. Then they set the date for the important event.

In the town of Sangarará at 8:00 A.M. on the chosen day, they celebrate the Mass and the baptism where the sponsors, the parents, and all the guests participate. After the mass they go to the house of the parents of the baptized. It is very well decorated with tables and chairs for all. At the table, they serve the first dish for the sponsors that comes wrapped in a very colorful llclla or blanket with designs. Inside it, there is still hot mote and puspo (boiled beans along with the mote). Then they bring another lliclla with baked potatoes and place it in the center of the godparents table. They also bring a third dish, which is actually a large platter filled with cooked meat from different animals such as: pig, guinea pig, chicken, duck etc.

After presenting the dishes, all the guests eat. After enjoying this food, people hear the words of the parents of the baptized who ask permission from the godparents so that they can begin the customsand rules that they have for the haircut and the christening. The father of a girl makes the godfather carry a doll dressed in the typical costumes of the place in a lliclla, or traditional weaving. He has to dance with it loaded on his back to typical music. At the end of the song, the godfather has to pin a voluntary amount of money to the doll witha tipana. Then he passes this doll to the godmother to do the same. I’m the meantime, the godfather goes to the center of the room where the girl is sitting in a chair and cuts the first lock of her hair, leaving again a voluntary amount of money on a tray. The same will the done by godmother and all guests.

Following the haircut, the parents begin to count the money and make known to everyone the amount that was raised. They express thanks and say the money will be used in the education of their daughter. After this light fireworks to start the party to the sound of the musical groups that they hired.

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