Swedish celebration of St. Lucy

I don’t really know how, but veneration of St Lucy of Syracuse survived the Swedish Protestant Reformation (although Protestants don’t actually ask her to intercede for them), and grand concerts are arranged on her feast day (today, in case you didn’t know). Many also celebrate her feast day privately by dressing up just like in the clip below, singing some songs and eating special food. Here, St Lucy has become a symbol of tolerance, steadfastness and virtue in general. This concert is from Swedish television and includes, among many other things, an amazing rendition of Fauré’s “Pie Jesu”.


I know most of you don’t understand Swedish, but the music and amazing reverence is in focus here! :slight_smile:

we used to celebrate it because we have a daughter named Lucy, she chose herself to do this one year for all saints at her Catholic school, and did it again for world friendship day in girl scouts, so she dressed up as saint Lucy for several years for friends and family. She sang but not as beautifully as here. thanks for the video (we are not Swedish at all btw). Found out from our neighbors at the time she also is venerated by the Italians, especially Sicilians, so her presentation was very popular.

St Nicholas is still honored in traditional Dutch families another survival of the Reform. Not to mention St. Olaf.

St. Lucy, also known as Santa Lucia, was a virgin and martyr, and was executed in Italy in 304 by pagans. She is the patron saint of the blind, but I don’t know why she was chosen for this honor. I’m not Swedish either, so I’m not sure why she is so beloved in Sweden, probably as Christianity spread, the story of her devotion to Jesus Christ and her virginal status was held out as an ideal for young girls to emulate. Her feast is observed today in the Divine Office, the Liturgy of the Hours.

Probably because several legends say she was deprived of sight and miraculously recieved new eyes. Probably, her eyes were somehow removed by her torturers, and God gave new new ones. However, one version that is told in Sweden has it that a man was madly in love with her, especially admiring her beautiful eyes. St Lucy/Lucia is then to have actually plucked her own eyes out and sent then to him, and then grew new ones. Somehow, I find the other version more believable. :wink:

that is why old images of St Lucy show her holding her eyeballs, I think the martyrdom story is more believable.

I subscribe to wikiHow and this was posted yesterday:


I just happen to be browsing this forum and saw this post on St. Lucy, so I thought I’d post and share…

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