“Pray with your heart to Santa Muerte”: Arely and the August Anniversary of Holy Death, Queens, New York, 2022

Most Holy Death

On the 26th and 27th of August in Queens New York, Arely Vazquez transgender leader and pioneer of Santa Muerte USA will throw a massive fiesta in honour of Holy Death. All devotees and those interested in Santa Muerte are welcome, states Arely, and in return for a donation at the door can expect entry to a spectacular event that will feature prayer, mariachi music, shows by Arely and two other transgender performers, as well as delicious Mexican fare and dancing into the night before the beautiful skeletal figure of Saint Death garbed in a ball-dress to die for.

Arely has been a devotee for 20 years. Although she grew up in Guerrero and had heard of the folk saint in her home country, her devotion to death began in the US. She left her home to find fresh pastures and new opportunities. Soon after a friend gifted her…

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