13 December, 2009

Day 13 (Lucia)

Today is Santa Lucia (Saint Lucy)'s day.
This is what Wikipedia says:

Saint Lucy's Day or the Feast of St. Lucy (Santa Lucia, Saint Lucia or sometimes Lucia for

short) is the Church feast day dedicated to St. Lucy and is observed on December 13. It retains traditional forms of celebration mainly in Scandinavia, parts of the United States and southern Europe. It is celebrated in Sweden, Denmark, Latvia, Estonia, Norway, Finland, Malta, Italy, Bosnia, Iceland, Bavaria and Croatia. In the United States, people in areas of Minnesota, and other states with Scandinavian roots, continue to celebrate the holiday, often centered around church events. Before the reform of the Gregorian calendar in the 16th century, St. Lucy's Day fell close to the winter solstice in the Northern Hemisphere. In Scandinavia this was also the date in the Gregorian calendar earlier celebrated by the heathen population that was afraid of Lucifer, a celebration that still somewhat lives today through the tradition of Lucevaka – to stay awake on the night between 12th till 13th and guard oneself against being taken by Lucifer lord of darkness by having an all night party. This is still carried out today mostly by the younger population having great parties. When the light then arrives with the morning you are safe again. In traditional celebrations, Saint Lucy comes as a young woman with lights and sweets. It is one of the few saint days observed in Scandinavia. In some forms, a procession is headed by one girl wearing a crown of candles (or lights), while others in the procession hold only a single candle each.

Here's a video from Sweden. Usually this is mainly an event for younger kids, but the song is the same.


JD and Max said...

Hi everyone - we're loving your advent calendar idea and have been ejoying counting down to the big day with you. Lovely video, made us feel very festive! Schnauzer snuggles - JD and Max.

Maggie and Mitch said...

What a very interesting post! Happy Santa Lucia day, guys!

Love ya lots,
Maggie and Mitch

Mango said...

Those singing girls were great! Being able to sing is a true gift. I did worry a little about the girl with candles on her head. It is hard to keep your head so still whilst singing.


Khyra The Siberian Husky And Sometimes Her Mom said...

Tank woo fur sharing the story behind the tradition!

PeeEssWoo: Hi Bajas!

Benny and Lily said...

Thank you for teaching us stuff today
Benny & Lily

Lorenza said...

Happy Saint Lucia Day!
Thanks for sharing it!
Kisses and hugs

Sequoia & Petunia said...

Cool, thanks for sharing!

Bajas your joy picture is a perfect postcard.

Yoda and Brutus said...

Thanks for sharing this holiday information with us.

Grandpa is from Latvia but came to the U.S. when he was only 9 years old during WWII as an orphan so he didn't have a lot of information on Latvian traditions. Mom loves hearing about anything that relates to Latvia.

Pugs & Kisses,

Yoda & Brutus

GAIL said...

Very interesting. I'm all for celebrations! Hope you enjoyed your break.