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 The celebration of St. Joseph                                                                                            

Author: TotÚ Miletta

 The celebration of St. Joseph is on March 19th.  . Until a little while ago that was a national holiday.  Now the celebration has been cancelled and the day of St. Joseph has become just another weekday. That contributed to diminish all celebrations held in all of Italy in this day.  It is popular belief that St. Joseph, who married the Virgin Mary, is the Holy Patron of the poor. It was remembered, in this day, as the Sacred Young Couple in a foreign land and waiting for their child to be born, was refused their request of a shelter for the delivery.  This action, profaned two sacred feelings: that of the hospitality and the love for the families. To remember the above mentioned action, in Brognaturo "when I was young" on March 19th  we used to prepare a special banquet, for vow, to say grace and or for devotion to St. Joseph.  A minimum of three people representing the Virgin Mary, Baby Jesus and St. Joseph, were invited at the table in place of the Sacred Family.  S. Joseph was always represented by an elderly person who sat at the head of the table.  As soon as the person that would play the role of St. Joseph was chosen, he would be notified in advance to prepare himself at the idea so it would not have any difficulty during the celebration.  The main dish was the pasta "accannarozzejia" (macaroni) with the chickpeas together with other dishes typical of the kitchen of the country people



A Miracle of St. Joseph

by Kelly Martino

When I was about 10 years old (67 now) my grandmother had cancer surgery that was not a success. After about a year she began to feel problems again and decided to do a St. Joseph's Altar.  Many family members joined in and they cooked for about 6 months.  They held the feast in our home on March 19th of that year.  The tradition there was to have a saint's table with several children who were served the meal first and then when they were finished everyone else  ate food from the various tables with a huge variety of food.  There was an altar in the living room with huge decorated circular loaves of bread and tables with every sort of delicacies possible.  The main course was a pasta made with sugo containing fennel leaves and pine nuts.  It was topped with toasted breadcrumbs. At least 100 people were there and most everything was eaten.  This was in Houston, TX and everyone who knew about the feast was automatically welcome. That was the tradition.

Her doctors had given her about a year to live.  Her faith was so great in the power of this feast that she had complete remission of the cancer and lived another 20 years.

It is sad to know that it is no longer celebrated in Italy.


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