Feast of San Gennaro in Naples: The celebrations for the Patron Saint
“Long live San Gennaro”
Vita gazette – In Naples, the miracle of melting the blood of San Gennaro, Bishop and Patron Saint of Naples and Campania, was repeated.
Naples, the “miracle” of San Gennaro is renewed. In Naples, the “miracle” of melting the blood of San Gennaro, patron saint of Naples and Campania, was repeated. The liquefaction of the blood of San Gennaro occurs three times a year: on 19 September, the day of San Gennaro, the Saturday preceding the first Sunday in May, and on 16 December. Therefore, he was greeted by long applause from the many Neapolitans who had gathered in the Cathedral since the early morning hours to participate in the celebration of the archbishop, Domenico Battaglia. Thousands of faithful experienced the wait for the miracle between prayers, songs, invocations and meditation on the memory of the mission and martyrdom of San Gennaro. The ‘miracle’ is read by the faithful as a sign of good omen for the city and Campania. “May it truly be a celebration, a celebration in the heart, a celebration that asks for the desire for peace in our lives, in this city, in our land ”, are the words pronounced by the archbishop after the announcement of the liquefaction of the blood of San Gennaro which had already dissolved when the ampoule was taken from the shrine located in the Chapel of San Gennaro in the Duomo.
Three times a year, on official and solemn dates, San Gennaro renews his bond with Naples and his blood is exposed in front of thousands of citizens and faithful. And every time, we hope that it will melt. On the Saturday preceding the first Sunday of May, 19 September and 16 December, they flock to the Chapel and the Cathedral to witness the miracle of liquefaction.
Popular belief considers the figure of Gennaro to be fundamental in stopping the eruption of Vesuvius in 1631, which occurred at the time of a procession in which his relics were carried and displayed in front of the active volcano.
The atmosphere is thick with expectation; in the front row, the “relatives”, the women of the people, await the moment in which they will have to sing songs and invocations to the saint to ensure that the blood returns to its natural state, waiting for the cardinal to expose the ampoule and the companion of wave your handkerchief to announce the miracle.
The “relatives” are Neapolitan women, mostly elderly, who, in the popular imagination, descend from the Saint and Eusebia, the nurse who collected his blood after the beheading. They are called relatives because they are linked to the Saint by an atavistic familiarity, in such confidence with Him that they call him “yellow face” (from the colour of the precious metal with which the bust is made) and, if necessary, affectionately scold him when the miracle is late in arriving. Be fulfilled. The “relatives” repeat archaic rituals rooted in the Greek origins of Naples, when women mourned the young dead in the hope of resurrection, renewing the myth of the eternal return. San Gennaro is like a son to them.
On the other hand, the cult of San Gennaro has always been popular and rooted in Neapolitan culture. “San Gennaro, take care of it!” is an invocation repeated in the face of personal worries, collective fears, natural events and disasters…