Wap Magula

Wap Magula #13 by Son of the Morning Light  on 500px.com

A Roman Catholic priest ploughs a paddy field with a pair of water buffalo, symbolically beginning the annual Maha sowing season. All over Sri Lanka, this Wap Magula ceremony is conducted by Buddhist or Hindu priests, but in Wahakotte, a village in the Matale District, that has remained Roman Catholic since the 16th century, the ceremony takes the form of a unique “farmers’ mass” held in the paddy fields close to the St Anthony’s Church. For more on this extraordinary ceremony, and a history of this community, see my piece St Anthony’s Wahakotte: a Missionary Bastion, in the November issue of Serendib, the inflight magazine of SriLankan Airlines.

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