S. Kyle Johnson is a doctoral student in Systematic Theology at Boston College. 

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Panama Celebrates its Black Christ, Part of Protest Against Colonialism and Slavery

by S. Kyle Johnson 10-10-2019

Image via Maria Maarbes / Shutterstock

Each year around the time of Lent, local men and women across Colón – where slavery was particularly widespread – dramatize the story of self-liberated black slaves known as the Cimarrones. This reenactment is one of a series of celebrations, or “carnivals,” observed around the time of Lent by those who identify with the cultural tradition known colloquially as “Congo.” The term Congo was originally used by the Spanish colonists for anyone of African descent. It is now is used for traditions that can be traced back to the Cimarrones.