Some foreign devotees at the just concluded Osun-Osogbo festival have expressed belief in the sanctity of the Osun deity, saying the annual fiesta offers an opportunity for worship through the sacred grove.
The tourists, who spoke with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) on the sidelines of the grand finale of the festival in Osogbo, said the event gave them joy and a sense of belonging in the worship of the Osun goddess.
A Brazilian, Regina Alberto, said she was in Osun specifically for the festival as a devotee of the Yoruba Orisa worship.
NAN reports that Mrs Alberto is a member of the Oduduwa Worldwide Group, a Diaspora socio-cultural organisation committed to the promotion of Yoruba culture, tradition, and worship.
NAN also reports that no fewer than 50 members of the group were sighted at the sacred grove during Friday’s grand finale.
Mrs Alberto, who said this was her second outing at the festival, said that her group had been coming to the festival since 2011.
“I am from Brazil. I am with Oduduwa Brazil, which is part of Oduduwa Worldwide Group.
“The Osun-Osogbo festival is very important to us because in Brazil we praise Orisa diety and being here and seeing everyone praying and worshipping, just like we try to do is so emotional.
“The energy is so powerful, it is really hard not to cry,” she said.
Mrs Alberto said the understanding of her group that the source and worship point of the Osun goddess was located at the Osun-Osogbo grove spurred its interest in the festival.
She said the festival gave members of the visiting devotees joy to be in the company of indigenous devotees and others from around the world to celebrate the Osun goddess.