What’s on in York: Sankta Lucia – Festival of Light

An atmospheric, candlelit procession and carol service for all the family based on the traditional Swedish Lucia celebration.

8th Dec 2017

York Minster

7.30pm

FREE

7.30pm (doors open at 7pm)

An atmospheric, candlelit procession and carol service for all the family based on the traditional Swedish Lucia celebration.

In Sweden, Lucia is one of the most significant traditions in the calendar – a powerful symbol and celebration of light and an integral part of the Advent season.

The celebration of Sankta Lucia is based on the bravery and martyrdom of a young Sicilian girl – St Lucy – who died in the early fourth century. Her name and story reached Sweden along with Christianity, and she remained popular even after the Reformation as the bringer of light during the long darkness of winter.

The Lucia procession enters singing the traditional Lucia song, the tune of which was brought to Sweden from Italy in the middle of the 19th century. The singers are dressed in white gowns and carry candles, with Lucia herself as the focal point, wearing a crown of candles and a red ribbon round her waist, symbolising her martyrdom. The ‘starboys’ go back to a tradition of re-enacting the journey of the Magi on Twelfth Night.

The service is run in partnership with the York Anglo-Scandinavian Society.

No booking is required but please arrive early as this is a popular service.

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