Spanish club unites to honor passed ones

Bowie community ofrenda is available for viewing in the library


Courtesy of Kelly Tagle

(Left to right) Philip Weiss, Alex Araiza, Sandy Benitez, and Cyn Torrey Smith are members of the Spanish Club and have worked together to create an Ofrenda in the library to commemorate the loss of loved ones known by the Bowie faculty and staff.

Students from the Spanish club frame pictures, decorate lights, and paint skulls as they prepare to assemble an ofrenda for the library to welcome the Bowies staff and faculties loved ones back home. Ofrendas are an altar setting built to re-welcome passed one’s into their homes during the Dia de Los Muertos festival.

“Ofrendas are decorated with photos of the deceased, marigolds, candles, incense, sugar skulls, favorite foods of the beloved, water, oil, and salt,” Spanish club sponsor, Kelly Tagle said.

The setting up of Ofrendas to honor the deceased is a tradition that dates back to Pre Hispanic times usually created on the Day of the Dead, which is a Hispanic and Latin celebration that welcomes passed ones in their life and a time to honor their deads through decorations, treats, and Mexican traditions.

“It is originally from Mexico but is celebrated across Latin America today,” Toggle said. “The Day of the Dead is a festival celebrating the life and death.”

The Bowie community commemorates this festival by assembling an Ofrenda in the library through the help of the Spanish club. These ofrendas are created for people who have passed away and are intended to be welcomed at the altar setting throughout the Dia De Los Muertos holiday.  

“The Bowie community Ofrenda is adorned with photos of lost loved ones of Bowie faculty and staff,” Toggle said. “We have placed name cards to identify these special friends and family.”

The Day of the Dead is an important celebration for the Hispanic culture and many Bowie students partaken in the Dia De Los Muertos festival by having the portraits of their loved ones displayed among others in the library

“During this time, families welcome home the spirits of the dead by creating a festive atmosphere for their loved ones to enjoy.” Toggle said.