Sant'Agata's Festival in Catania Sicily

1 Feb

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One of the most highly venerated virgin martyrs of Christian antiquity, Saint Agatha is the patron saint of Catania, Sorihuela del Guadalimar (Spain), Molise, San Marino and Malta. With crowds of up to 1,000,000 strong, there are few mass expressions of devotion as popular as the Festa di Sant’Agata in Catania.

The whole city turns out en masse, tens of thousands come from afar to express their gratitude or to pray for intercession and many others just come for the incredible atmosphere, the fireworks and the food! So important is Sant’Agata in the spiritual lives of the Catanesi that they celebrate her life twice a year: the first, most important festa takes place from 3rd – 5th February and remembers her martyrdom, while the second, held on 17th August, records the return of her mortal remains to the city from Constantinople in 1126, after an absence of 86 years.

Born into a Patrician family in Catania, the devoutly religious Sant’Agata soon attracted the amorous attentions of the Roman Proconsul Quintianus, who wished to take her as his wife. She refused, staunchly defending her honour and her faith and Quintianus’s courtship quickly turned to religious persecution and psychopathic hatred. After enduring the horrific torture of being rolled on hot coals and having her breasts amputated, Sant’Agata died on 5th February 251.

Here the official website and the Festival’s schedule

The B&B Catania Globetrotter is just few minutes walking far from all celebrations.

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