On the Plaza of the Capuchin Monks in Cordoba, we find the Christ of Amends and Compassion structure which is more commonly known as “Cristo de los Faroles” or Christ of the Lanterns. This sculpture was created by Juan Navarro León in 1794 and this is one of the most frequently visited places in Cordoba. The Franciscan Capuchin Monk Fray Diego José de Cádiz, one one of its greatest promoters. This piece was made nationally famous with the 1958 Antonio Molina’s movie “El Cristo de los Faroles”.
The site bears an interesting legend which tells the story of a man called Carvajal, member of a well known family of Cordoba which mysteriously and under strange circumstances apparently disappeared. No one exactly knows what happened, if he was dead or killed. According to the legend, Carvajal no longer resided in the city for many years, reason for spying eyes each night for what was thought to be a spirit or ghost, or a poor soul which would visit the Christ each night praying for peace for his tormented soul. They say that as he leaves the plaza, he disappears. No one has very seen his face or has been able to follow him.
The one day, Carvajal came to visit the city and say his good-byes to the community surrounding the Christ saying “I leave to meet my destiny in Cuba, as part of the King’s army and I have come today to keep a promise I made to this Christ when it was installed here. I was on my way home late at night when I was violently assaulted by two masked men. I fled from them but fell prey again, I defended myself with all my might and in the heat of the struggle we rolled on the floor, weapons shown and blood spilled .. and all of a sudden, I found myself alone and frighten besides the Cross of Christ. I thanked him for having saved me from the bandits and vowed to visit him every night that I would be in Cordoba at the very same hour that I was saved from those assassins. So I have done every day of my leave in the city until tomorrow when I shall part anew to Cuba.”
It was never a spirit nor a ghost, but a man that kept his promise each time he returned to Cordoba.