Annual Santa Lucia Festival To Be Held At Axtell Bethany Lutheran

The 32nd annual Santa Lucia Festival will be held Saturday, December 11, at the Bethany Lutheran Church located two miles east and one and a half miles south of Axtell from 9:30 a.m. to 11:00 a.m.
The program, presented throughout the morning, will feature devotions, children’s bell choir, vocal solos and groups, piano and other instrumental selections.
One of the Bethany Lutheran’s college-aged girls will portray “St. Lucia”, wearing the traditional white robe, red sash and crown of lights.  
Small girls, dressed in Swedish costumes, will carry baskets of tiny red and white mints called “Polkagrisir” and distribute them to the guests. Christmas sweets, cookies, tiny rolls and coffee will be served.
Santa Lucia Day traditionally has many reasons for being observed and has become a joyous celebration now associated with the Christmas season, with beautiful Swedish decorations.
The Santa Lucia festival is free and open to the public.
The Swedish Christmas celebration begins December 13, the feast day of St. Lucia, gift bringer.
St. Lucia lived in Syracuse, in Sicily, during the days of the Roman Empire.  She gave her dowry to Christians who had been persecuted for their faith.  Her fiance revealed to authorities that she, too, was a Christian, and Lucia died a martyr’s death.
The Swedish people admired her courage and generosity, and celebrated her feast day.  It was a custom for the oldest daughter to dress in a white dress with a red sash and wear a crown with several candles, representing St. Lucia.  As soon as the first cock crowed, she went around the house, carrying coffee to each member of the family and sang a special carol for the day.
Many girls in Sweden once believed that St. Lucia could reveal their future on her day, so they prayed to her to let them know the names of their future husbands.

Leave a Reply