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Assumption Day in Gambia
Culture & Traditions   National Holidays   Religious Festivals   
Our Lady of the Assumption:

Date: Wednesday 15 August, 2018 See also the HERE

Also known as the Feast of the Assumption it is a recognised public holiday in Gambia and is also known as Saint Mary (pronounced locally as Sang Marie).

This is a time when all Christian denominations come out in force to pay homage to Mary, mother of Jesus. It is from this feast that the Kombo St. Mary Division K.S.M.D. got its name from and the capital of Banjul is on St. Mary's Island.

Sang Marie became a public holiday in 1958. In 1976 Sang Marie was removed from the schedule of public holidays but was re-instated on the 8th August 2007 and has been celebrated ever since.

Church members are expected to attend mass. There is a formal procession in the streets and a holy admiration of the Blessed Sacrament. Then follows celebrations, street parades, masquerades, drumming with food shared locally for all and sundry. Muslims happily participate in this part of the celebrations and Christian with Muslim friend often will ask them over for a meal or send some special foods over to their house. This day is particularly prevalent in the capital Banjul as there are a large concentration of Churches, nunneries and holy orders.

There is indeed a superstition or rather strong belief that it always rains in the week running up to the holy day as well as on the day itself and it is seen as a sign from Mary of her appreciation.


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