LIFESTYLE

Massive pilgrimage in northeastern Brazil honors Padre Cícero
Rev. Cícero Romão Batista's followers say that during a Mass celebrated by the priest in 1889, a woman receiving communion declared that the host had turned to blood in her mouth. Since then, pilgrims honor him once a year walking along a 2-kilometer dirt path to a shrine in Juazeiro do Norte.
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In this Oct. 31, 2015 photo, indigenous from the Pankararu tribe carry a cross and images of Padre Cicero along the Holy Sepulchre path used by pilgrims in Juazeiro do Norte, Brazil. Padre Cicero was both a priest and a politician, serving as mayor of Juazeiro do Norte for 15 years. He became renowned for helping the poor and improving the lives of farmers and residents of Brazil's arid northeast. (AP Photo/Leo Correa)

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In this Oct. 31, 2015 photo, pilgrims pass behind the walking stick that's part of the statue of Padre Cicero in Juazeiro do Norte, Brazil. Followers of the late Brazilian priest say they will receive a blessing if they pass behind his cane three times. (AP Photo/Leo Correa)

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In this Oct. 30, 2015 photo, a pilgrim wearing a photo of Padre Cicero on her hat lights a candle in the square in Juazeiro do Norte, Brazil. Faced with Padre Cicero's persistent popularity, Pope Benedict XVI proposed that he be studied as a possible candidate for canonization. That review is still in progress, and his supporters hope that he will eventually be rehabilitated and canonized. (AP Photo/Leo Correa)

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In this Oct. 31, 2015 photo, a beggar presses a crucifix to her forehead as she stands before a statue of Padre Cicero in Juazeiro do Norte, Brazil, during a pilgrimage in honor of the late Brazilian priest. Rev. Cicero Romao Batista became renowned for helping the poor and improving the lives of farmers and residents of Brazil's arid northeast. (AP Photo/Leo Correa)

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In this Oct. 31, 2015 photo, Marcilio da Silva crawls on his knees around the statue of Padre Cicero in Juazeiro do Norte, Brazil. Silva, 31, from Pernambuco state, made the pilgrimage to ask the late Brazilian priest to help his mother who suffers from diabetes, and to ask for help to buy her a small home. (AP Photo/Leo Correa)

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In this Nov. 2, 2015 photo, a statue of "Padre Cicero" stands on the sidewalk where shops open for the last day of festivities in honor of the late Brazilian priest in Juazeiro do Norte, Brazil. For almost a week, including the Day of the Dead, the Brazilian city is filled with thousands of pilgrims who come to honor Padre Cicero, a figure venerated here as a saint but not recognized as one by the Roman Catholic Church. (AP Photo/Leo Correa)

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In this Oct. 31, 2015 photo, ribbons placed by pilgrims hang from trees at the start of the Holy Sepulcher path, a road used by pilgrims who walk here to honor Padre Cicero in Juazeiro do Norte, Brazil. The ribbons symbolize promises made to the late Brazilian priest. (AP Photo/Leo Correa)

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In this Oct. 31, 2015 photo, an elderly pilgrim using a walking stick poses for a portrait along the Holy Sepulchre path in Juazeiro do Norte, Brazil, during his pilgrimage to honor Padre Cicero. Followers of the late Brazilian priest visit each year for a five day period, wrapping up on Day of the Dead, to honor the man who is considered the patron saint of this city in Ceara state. (AP Photo/Leo Correa)

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In this Nov. 2, 2015 photo, pilgrims hold up religious icons for a blessing during the farewell ceremony at Our Lady of Sorrows church in Juazeiro do Norte, Brazil. "We believe that he was _ that he is _ an important person for our northeast and we hope he can intercede and send rain," said Leunil Gomes de Carvalho, 36, from the city of Floresta, who said he has been visiting since he was 6. (AP Photo/Leo Correa)

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In this Oct. 31, 2015 photo, a statue of Padre Cicero, a late Brazilian priest who's venerated as a saint here but not recognized as one by the Roman Catholic Church, stands tall in Juazeiro do Norte, Brazil. People line up to touch the statue, some praying on their knees before it. Others leave letters of gratitude to him, who they credit with miracles. (AP Photo/Leo Correa)

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In this Oct. 31, 2015 photo, indigenous people from the Pankararu tribe walk along the Holy Sepulchre path that pilgrims use in Juazeiro do Norte, Brazil. Some wear native ceremonial outfits made of straw as others carry crosses and images of the late priest known as Padre Cicero, a figure venerated here as a saint but not recognized as one by the Roman Catholic Church. (AP Photo/Leo Correa)

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In this Nov. 1, 2015 photo, Christian icons are illuminated by candlelight inside a chapel along the Holy Sepulchre path used by pilgrims who honor Padre Cicero in Juazeiro do Norte, Brazil. People credit the late Brazilian priest with miracles and venerate him as a saint, but he's not recognized as one by the Roman Catholic Church. (AP Photo/Leo Correa)

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In this Oct. 30, 2015 photo, Priest Aureliano Godim listens a pilgrim's confession at Our Lady of Perpetuo Socorro church in Juazeiro do Norte, Brazil, during a week-long pilgrimage in honor of Padre Cicero. Pilgrims come to remember the man who is considered the patron saint of this city in Ceara state. (AP Photo/Leo Correa)

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In this Oct. 31, 2015 photo, people beg for money near a statue of Padre Cicero in Juazeiro do Norte, Brazil, during a pilgrimage in honor of the late priest. The Brazilian reverend became renowned for helping the poor and improving the lives of farmers and residents of Brazil's arid northeast. (AP Photo/Leo Correa)

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In this Oct. 30, 2015 photo, a church worker holds a pilgrim's hat over the grave of Padre Cicero to bless it at Our Lady of Perpetuo Socorro church in Juazeiro do Norte, Brazil. Followers of the late Rev. Cicero Romao Batista, who hold him up as worthy of sainthood, have transformed this town into a place of pilgrimage, one of the leading centers of popular religiosity in Latin America with hundreds of thousands of visitors each year. (AP Photo/Leo Correa)

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In this Oct. 31, 2015 photo, a member of the indigenous Pankararu tribe wears a ceremonial outfit and plays a flute in Juazeiro do Norte, Brazil. The path he walks is called the Holy Sepulchre, a two kilometer unpaved road that pilgrims use to pay back promises made to Padre Cicero, a figure venerated here as a saint but not recognized as one by the Roman Catholic Church, or to ask for his help. (AP Photo/Leo Correa)

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In this Oct. 31, 2015 photo, a photograph of the late Padre Cicero lays on rocks along the Holy Sepulcher path used by pilgrims in Juazeiro do Norte, Brazil. Faced with Padre Cicero's persistent popularity, Pope Benedict XVI proposed that he be studied as a possible candidate for canonization. That review is still in progress, and his supporters hope that he will eventually be rehabilitated and canonized. (AP Photo/Leo Correa)

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In this Oct. 31, 2015 photo, pilgrim Edite Monteiro kisses a statue of Padre Cicero standing at the start of a path called the Holy Sepulcher, used by those who come to honor the late priest in Juazeiro do Norte, Brazil. Monteiro, a 56-year-old farmer, said she came to ask for a good harvest and blessings for her family. (AP Photo/Leo Correa)

Massive pilgrimage in northeastern Brazil honors Padre Cícero

Rev. Cícero Romão Batista's followers say that during a Mass celebrated by the priest in 1889, a woman receiving communion declared that the host had turned to blood in her mouth. Since then, pilgrims honor him once a year walking along a 2-kilometer dirt path to a shrine in Juazeiro do Norte.

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