CHIMAYO, N.M. — Authorities are preparing for an annual journey that brings thousands of travelers to a Roman Catholic shrine in northern New Mexico each year.

The Santa Fe New Mexican reports most travelers arrive to El Santuario de Chimayo during the Holy Week pilgrimage on Good Friday.

Some travelers are drawn to the rural village to view Nuestro Senor de Esquipulas, a crucifix that, according to legend, was discovered at the site on Easter Week in the early 1800s. Some are drawn to the holy dirt, believed to have healing powers.

Some make the trek to visit another chapel nearby and pay homage to Santo Nino de Atocha, patron saint of those unjustly imprisoned or in peril.

New Mexico State Police and the state Department of Transportation work to keep the travelers safe on highways, while volunteers stationed along the route provide water and snacks.


Information from: The Santa Fe New Mexican, http://www.sfnewmexican.com