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St. Lucia Festival planned

Published: Wednesday, Nov. 20, 2013 1:53 p.m. CDT • Updated: Wednesday, Nov. 20, 2013 4:48 p.m. CDT
(Photo contributed)
Lily Gould (right) will portray Lucia at the annual St. Lucia Festival breakfast. Her attendant is Shelby Weborg.

PRINCETON — A time-honored Swedish tradition continues with the annual St. Lucia Festival beginning at 9:30 a.m. Dec. 14 at the Evangelical Covenant Church, 24 N. Main St., Princeton. The event is being sponsored by the Women’s Ministry.

The annual St. Lucia breakfast and Festival of Light is a Swedish tradition celebrated in the Covenant Church. The legend of St. Lucia tells how she was martyred for her faith, bringing food and light to Sweden during the winter famine. According to legend, Lucia was the daughter of a wealth Sicilian family who refused a marriage, arranged by her family, to a non-Christian boy. The boy, who also came from a wealthy family, was insulted by her refusal of marriage and became instrumental in Lucia’s persecution.

The crown of candles, worn by the person who portrays Lucia, symbolizes the fire used to burn her to death as well as the light she carried to light her way as she minister to the poor. The red sash is a symbol of the dagger wounds which eventually caused her death. Although she was Catholic, after the Reformation, the Lutherans embraced her in their faith; to the people, the name Lucia means bringer of light.

The annual St. Lucia Festival has been an annual event at the Evangelical Covenant Church since 1975. The public is invited to attend. The breakfast will be served by women of the church dressed in traditional Swedish costumes. The menu will include the traditional egg casserole with Swedish fruit soup, breads, beverage and Christmas cookie. Tara Kunkel of Princeton will provided the entertainment.

Limited tickets are available and reserved seating is required. Tickets are $8 per person and must be paid for and picked up by Dec. 13. To make reservations, call Joan Eggers at 815-875-2168. A bake and craft sale will begin at 9 a.m. in the Happy Hands Preschool room and continue after the program.

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