Today is Sunday and church-goers celebrate God and Jesus on this day! For Catanese people the most important saint is Saint Agathae.

Sant’Agata, as we call her, is celebrated in Catania, on February 5th and it’s one of the most important festivals in Europe.

The city from day 3rd transforms itself. In the morning of day 3rd, the party begins with the Parade of the Senate Carriage, instead in the evening, there’s an appointment with the fireworks, famous for keeping time with soundtracks.

Day 4th, at dawn, there is the Mass of the Dawn, where the saint meets her devotees after a year. At this point Agata leaves the Cathedral and begins to make an external tour of the streets of Catania.

Day 5th is the official day of the festival, so in the afternoon Sant’Agata goes around the interior streets of Catania.

At dawn on 6th, Sant’Agata arrives at the Four Cornes and prepares to make to the ascent of San Giuliano; after reaching the top, she goes to via Crociferi where the cloistered nuns are waiting for her and come out of the convent to dedicate a song, in fact, “The song of the Poor Clares”.

After this, Sant’Agata greets her devotees returning to her room.

There are several culinary traditions including “The Minnuzze of Sant’Agata” based on sponge cake, ricotta and candied cherry. There are also almond and sugar-based “olivette”. Everybody should try them!

Finally, for the people of Catania, all that remains is to wait another year for the party that they will always keep still in their hearts…

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D’Agostino Rachele, Ferrara Agata


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