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Former slave port keeps African traditions alive through religious syncretism

Brazil is Catholic country, but in the city of Salvador da Bahia, people’s religious expression has closer ties to Africa than Rome.

Salvador was the first slave port in the Americas, and some say those ancestral roots make the city a part of “Africa outside of Africa.”

Today, those African roots remain strong through syncretic religious expressions, the most important of which is the annual “Lavagem do Bonfim” pilgrimage.

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