Saint Agatha of Sicily (died ca. 251) is a Christian saint. Her memorial is on 5 February. She was born at Catania, Sicily, and she was martyred in approximately 251. She is one of seven women, excluding the Blessed Virgin Mary, commemorated by name in the Canon of the Mass.
She is the patron saint of Catania, Molise, Malta, San Marino and Zamarramala, municipality of Segovia in Spain. She is also the patron of martyrs, wet nurses, fire, earthquakes, and eruptions of Mount Etna.
Basques have a tradition of gathering on Saint Agatha’s eve (Santa Ageda bezpera in Basque) and going round the village. Homeowners can choose to hear a song about her life, accompanied by the beats of their walking sticks on the floor or a prayer for those deceased in the house. After that, the home-owner donates food to the chorus. This song has varying lyrics according to the local tradition and the Basque language.
There will be a celebration at Boiseko Ikastola (1915 West University Drive, 208/343-4234) on Friday, February 3rd at 10AM, and we hope you can attend. If that doesn’t work with your schedule, there is another chance to celebrate at the Basque Museum & Cultural Center (611 Grove Street, 208/343-2671) on Monday, February 6th at 7 PM.
Sticks (used to hit the ground as we sing) and the lyrics will be provided. All you need to do is wear white and blue.
Please feel free to invite anyone you’d like!
(Image from sagradoweb.com)
- Cooking Class at the Basque Museum in Boise
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