Iglesia de San Sebastián
Some 10 blocks south of the square stands Iglesia de San Sebastián, built in 1581 as a site for blacks and Indians in the city to pray. The towers were added in later years and rebuilt in 1957 in a rather unattractive style. The church’s architecture is fairly elemental, but the 16th-century image of Saint Sebastian with 15 silver arrows over his body is worth a look. The remains of Honduran president and general José Trinidad Cabañas are buried under the church floor, marked by an engraved stone.
In early February the church is the stage for the Baile de los Diablitos, which remembers the persecution (and death) of Sebastian, a Christian saint and martyr who died during the Roman persecution of Christians in the 3rd century A.D. In the dance, Sebastian begins as one of the persecutors, converts to Christianity, and becomes one of the persecuted, eventually dying by arrows. In a local twist, the diablitos or devils are believed to represent a native Lenca priest who converts to Christianity.
© Chris Humphrey and Amy E. Robertson from Moon Honduras, 5th Edition