How Our Little Roses Celebrates Quinceañera Traditions in COVID times
A Quinceañera is a Hispanic tradition of celebrating a young girl’s coming of age on her 15th birthday, similar to the American Sweet 16 celebrations. Today’s celebrations embrace religious customs as well as the virtues of family and social responsibility. At Our Little Roses, this is a special moment for our girls.
We thought our sponsors and supporters might be interested in learning more about Honduran Quinceañera traditions, why they’re so important to Our Little Roses, and how we celebrate especially in the times of experiencing a global pandemic.
What is the significance of the Quinceañera to Our Little Roses?
As our founder, Diana Dillenberger Frade, explains, “For Our Little Roses, marking this benchmark in our girls’ lives in the context of the Holy Eucharist and the verbal commitment to continue to follow Jesus and be an example for the younger girls is a perfect way to become a young woman.”
The Quinceañera is an empowering experience, reminding our girls of their value to Honduran society and responsibility to uplift their community. It also reinforces Our Little Roses’ commitment to celebrating Honduran traditions and encouraging our girls to embrace and understand their cultural identity. From the beginning, we’ve felt traditions are important. Even though Quinceañeras have declined in popularity in the last few decades, as Frade says, “For Our Little Roses, we will stick with tradition!”
Honduran Quinceañera traditions are part of Our Little Roses’ spirit and history, and we plan to celebrate them for years to come.
How does Our Little Roses celebrate each girl’s Quinceañera?
At Our Little Roses, we have an annual Quinceañera celebration in November or December to recognize all the girls who turned 15 within that year. All the girls love to participate in the celebration, especially our little ones, because they can’t wait until it’s their turn to experience this special tradition.
The girls begin their day by being pampered at the beauty salon to get their hair done so they look very special for the evening. Each Quinceañera chooses the dress she would like to wear to celebrate this special occasion (either cocktail length or longer), and while the colors vary from girl to girl, all the dresses are typically pastel.
Our Little Roses’ celebrations typically begin with a Quinceañera Mass where everyone is invited including visitors and the girls’ wonderful sponsors. Their sponsor (if they’re in Honduras) or another special person (in our case, Diana, Bishop Frade, or Mayra), will walk each girl down the aisle to sit in front of the altar where they reaffirm their baptismal vows, their commitment to lead a Christian life, and intention to set an example as they enter young adulthood. This is especially important and exciting for our younger girls to see and experience as they too look forward to the day they will get to celebrate their own Quinceañera.
After mass, we host their reception on our basketball court, which is beautifully decorated for the special occasion. We have a lovely dinner specially prepared, followed by dancing with music from a DJ and of course a beautiful Quinceañera birthday cake. Each of the girls is also given a necklace, usually a silver cross provided by one of their sponsors or a Godparent.
It’s a joyful day — and one that everyone in the Our Little Roses community looks forward to each year!
If you are planning to visit Our Little Roses to join us for the Quinceañera Celebration in Honduras, while we know how exciting this celebration is, lots of people have concerns about traveling internationally while we are still in the midst of this global pandemic with the many variant strains that have come to light.
We hope this serves to get more clarification on the situation in Honduras and on traveling internationally overall.
First, we’ll review the situation at Our Little Roses:
- ALL VISITORS TO THE HOME MUST SHOW PROOF OF VACCINATION
- Staff have been vaccinated, however, we have had some break-through infections
- Girls under 15 have not been vaccinated
- Masks must be worn at ALL TIMES WHEN ON CAMPUS and with the girls
- Girls are not allowed to go off campus for outings
- People who are staying off-campus are allowed one-time entrance and exit per day.
Overall Country Information:
- The vaccination rate is at about 23.8% for the country (https://graphics.reuters.com/world-coronavirus-tracker-and-maps/countries-and-territories/honduras/)
- Many places remain closed and there is still an active curfew in the country
- By U.S. law, before boarding the plane to return to the U.S. you must have a negative Covid test within 24 hours. This test costs approximately $65.00 per person. Mayra and her team will work with visitors who are staying on our campus to coordinate getting this test. For those staying in a hotel, the hotel can help coordinate your test.
You must have an official written negative lab test from Honduras that must be printed and uploaded to your pre-check-in.
- If you test positive you will be required to be quarantined in Honduras for 14 days and then show a negative test before being allowed back to the U.S.. You can stay at the B & B on campus for the quarantine. Travelers will be responsible for all costs incurred.
If you plan on visiting, please contact Our Little Roses Sponsorship Development Coordinator, Isabella at Isabella.Bobadilla@OurLittleRoses.org to find out more about the documentation needed before traveling.
We hope you enjoyed learning about Honduran Quinceañera traditions. Would you like to support events like these at Our Little Roses? Find out more about how you can sponsor one of our girls or start a fundraiser.