The day prior to Santa Águeda is a celebration of great importance in numerous towns and cities of the Basque geography. On February 4th, in many towns of Bizkaia, Gipuzkoa and Alava, groups of people and choirs parade down the streets singing canticles to honour Santa Águeda, recalling her life and martyrdom. Rod and walking ("makilas") sticks accompany their canticles.
Among the parades taking place on the occasion of Santa Águeda, we will highlight three processions. The prior Sunday to February 5th, on February 5th and the following Sunday, the inhabitants set course for the Sanctuary of Santa Águeda, which is located in Kastrexana (Barakaldo). The most predominant procession is the one taking place the following Sunday to Santa Águeda Day, as thousands attend the celebration.
Santa Águeda was a Sicilian virgin and martyr from the 3rd Century. She is the patron saint of women and fertility –that is why so many mother-to-be women turn to her. She is believed to have great many powers such as the ability to prevent fires and volcano eruptions, protect from bad spirits and cattle diseases and increase cattle production. Among the Basques, Santa Águeda also has the ability to cure cephalalgia and migraines.
Date: 02/03/2013 - 02/10/2013
Photo: Coro parroquial de Ibarra