Our Lady Conceição da Praia Festival
The most traditional of the religious festivals in Brazil, the festival in honor of Our Lady of Conceição da Praia dates back to 1550. The saint, patron saint of Salvador and some other cities, receives the homage of thousands of believers every year on December 8th. The ritual of the festivities follows the tradition of the novena (series of prayers lasting nine days) through the streets of Comércio district. During the obligatory passing by Corpo Santo Church, the image of Saint Joseph gets together with the images of Our Lady of Conceição da Praia and Baby Jesus.
The first chapel in honor of Our Lady of Conceição da Praia was erected in Salvador, ordered by the governor Tomé de Souza. According to some accounts, the governor himself helped in the construction work. Some years later it was demolished to give place to the current church, built in 1739 by the Albuquerque Cavalcanti family. The chapel was listed by IPHAN (Institute of the National Historical and Artistic Heritage) in 1938.