Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Melting Pot Holidays ~ Swedish Lucia!

Melting Pot Mom, Sofia, introduced fellow Melting Pot families to a Swedish holiday celebration. The following is her description of this tradition:

"The Swedish Lucia celebration is an annual festival of medieval origin, observed on the 13th of December. On this day, the darkness is brightened by Saint Lucia, a creature of goodness and light who opens the door to the Christmas season.

Named after a Sicilian saint, the Swedish Lucia does not have much in common with her namesake. She is celebrated in a variety of ways, but the most common is the Lucia procession consisting of a group of young girls and boys singing traditional Lucia songs. On her head, the girl or woman playing the part of Lucia wears a wreath of lingonberry sprigs with holders for real candlesto give the effect of a halo. She also has a white, full-length gown with a red ribbon around her waist. Her female attendants ( tärnor) wear similar gowns and the "star boys" (stjärngossar) wear white pointed hats decorated with stars.

Lucia processions are held in various places, ranging from kindergartens and schools to churches and the Swedish Parliament. Lucia can be perceived as a symbol of the good forces in life and a symbol of light in the dark winter. She usually appears early in the morning, bringing coffee and saffron-flavored buns (lussekatter) traditionally eaten around Christmas time in Sweden."

And here are photos of some of the Melting Pot cuties experiencing Swedish Lucia:

video

Thank you, Sofia, for sharing this holiday tradition!