Rituals during these days are based on popular local beliefs about death and its meaning, a mixture of Catholic and pagan elements which can be clearly observed on this date. All Soul´s Day is a private worship by the deceased´s friends and family, who believe the late person´s soul comes to visit them on November 1st at noon, and departs at the same time on the 2nd.

On November 2nd, the souls of the dead allegedly visit the houses where they used to live during their stay on earth. People make the necessary arrangements to honor them in the best possible way, to “feed them” and pray for them. Therefore, on November 1st, people bake small yellow figurines called “ofrendas” (offerings), in the shape of little angels, stairs (for the soul to come down to earth to eat and then go back to heaven), doves, hearts, crosses and different objects representing what the dead person used to love in life, such as a dog or a guitar. These offerings are placed on a table covered with a black cloth, next to a bottle with holy water, a lit candle, a crucifix, flowers, and the dead person’s favorite foods and drinks to “invite” the soul. It is often customary to hang up a black piece of fabric or “mourning cloth,” which is also used in funeral parlors. If the person has recently died, it is said that his or her soul has not entered heaven yet and it is still purifying sins; therefore, the spirit returns to visit the living world. In these families, the rituals are more intense, and the number of offerings is higher.

On Nov. 2nd, people visit the cemetery during the morning, and participate in a mass. They lay crosses and funeral wreaths made of colorful paper flowers on the graves. The families of the recently deceased sweep the floor in their houses and pick up the flowers to take them to the cemetery. When people come back home, they clear the table and distribute the offerings among friends and family. The celebration continues until dawn.