The Brotherhood of El Gran Poder has its headquarters in this Basilica in the Plaza de San Lorenzo. They do their penance station in the 'Madrugá' from Thursday to Good Friday, in the midst of absolute silence, being one of the brotherhoods that arouse the most devotion among Sevillians.
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Historians trace the foundation of the Brotherhood to the 15th century, initially settling in the Benedictine Convent of Santo Domingo de Silos, of which the current church of San Benito Abad, in Luis Montoto, remains as testimony. From there, it would go through various locations throughout its history.
Already in the fifteenth century it appears located in the Convent of Santiago de la Espada and in the sixteenth century it was moved to a chapel of the Franciscan Convent of Santa María del Valle, where today is the Sanctuary of the Brotherhood of the Gypsies. From the Valley they would move to San Lorenzo at the beginning of the 18th century and the current headquarters would be built in the middle of the 20th century.
The temple was built between 1959 and 1965 in a neo-baroque style with a very classical air inside, following the traces of the architects Antonio Delgado Roig and Alberto Balbontín. The floor plan is that of a large, almost circular space, covered by a large coffered vault, which seems directly inspired by that of Agrippa's Pantheon in Rome. As in the Roman case, this space is preceded by a large rectangular atrium through which it is accessed, covered by a quarter-barrel vault, also coffered.
The temple has been a Minor Basilica since 1992, the result of a concession from Pope John Paul II.
The holders of the Brotherhood are Jesus of Great Power and the Virgin of Greater Pain and Transfer.
Jesús del Gran Poder is an image of Jesus carrying the cross made by Juan de Mesa around 1620. It constitutes a masterpiece of Sevillian Baroque, with a splendid anatomical treatment and an expressionism in the face that manages to convey the sensation of deep suffering and great solemnity at the same time.
The image of the Virgin is an anonymous work from the 18th century, with successive restorations in the 20th century. She is in procession under a canopy accompanied by Saint John the Baptist, an image carved for the Brotherhood by Juan de Mesa at the same time he sculpted the Lord.