Wednesday, March 19, 2008


Everyone in America is familiar with St. Patrick's Day -- two days ago everyone was an amateur Irishman drinking green beer -- but if you're Italian you know the big day is St. Joseph's Day, March 19th. The Feast of St. Joseph is celebrated in Italy and in Italian neighborhoods throughout the United States. The picture above comes from the St. Joseph's Day celebration in Spain. Statues are carried through the streets, and people open their homes to provide food and drink for everyone who shows up. It's a great idea! C'entanni! In Sicily, St. Joseph is regarded as the Patron Saint, and in many Italian-American communities thanks are given to St. Joseph ("San Giuseppe") for preventing a famine in Sicily during the Middle Ages. Giving food to the needy is a St. Joseph's Day custom. In some communities it is traditional to wear red clothing and eat a Sicilian pastry known as Zeppole on St. Joseph's Day.

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