Lucia means "the shining one," "the radiant one." She lived in Sicily at the end of the 3rd century and helped persecuted people and fugitives who sought refuge in caves and catacombs. Lucia provided the threatened people with the most necessary things, which she brought in baskets to the underground hiding places. To have both hands free, she put a wreath of candles on her head.
Saint Lucy‘s day, which reminds the poor, the persecuted, and the sick of the courage of a young woman, is traditionally celebrated in Sweden. A girl in a white dress with a wreath of lights on her head parades through the towns. In Italy, there are also Lucien light parades in December.
At the International Youth Library, we have celebrated the Festival of Lights in this tradition for over 25 years. Starting in mid-November, children make colorful houses of lights at the library. Then, to start off the Christmas market, a long procession of children and parents moves around the castle pond with self-made houses of lights and follows Lucia. When it is dark, the houses are placed on the water, which turns the lake into a sparkling sea of lights.
Festival of Lights
Friday, December 8, 5 p.m.
Registration is not required.
Fotos: © Internationale Jugendbibliothek