I was so stirred yesterday morning.
My mom's from a beautiful historic small town in the north of the island. It's called Garachico and in August 16th there are the local festivities in honor of San Roque.
Every year we go to a mass in the Saint's chapel. Now, there are too many people and they get San Roque out from the Chapel and the mass is outside. Jose Luis, the priest, always tells us the same history of San Roque, how he was born in a rich aristocratic family in Montpelier. And when his parents died he gave all the heritage to the village he lived in and he went to Roma, he wanted to help others and live a religious life. He stood by the plague patients and then he started to cure them. People thought it was miraculous and everyone came with him to recover.
Then he got the plague himself and went to a cave where a little dog came always to heal him up. God was meant to have done this and also to have made a little river to go where he was and so he could have water. A friend of him found him and treated him until he was so ill and went back home where nobody recognized him because the illness and he was given to jail. He died there and it's said that a great light came from him and they discovered the born-sign he had in his chest; a cross.
Since then everywhere in Europe suffering the plague prayed to San Roque to save them and get the plague out of their towns.
That's why, when in Garachico centuries ago, the plague came in a boat from Seville, they prayed to San Roque to help them and they promised that if the plague stopped they'll make a mass every August 16th for him.
My mom always goes to this mass as she went always with my Grandma and now it's me who goes with her and also my kids.
But yesterday I don't know why I was soooo touched in the mass.
When San Roque went out from the chapel he did it with a back music of his new hymn. It was so pretty and I got so emotional. I thought I was going to cry. Everyone around was so touched also and he was so beautiful with his little dog besides him.
The square of the chapel was so pretty decorated with the typical ribbons in a "bamboo" stick. And full of people dressed in the typical antique clothes. It was so pretty everything and it deeply touched my heart.
I have been "angry" with God for so long, but I have staretd feeling better since my little girl was in the hospital and the only healing I had was talking to God and asking him to take care of my little newborn girl. So yesterday I felt so near to San Roque and God and felt really good!
Here are some pics of the mass and the procession that took place after the mass and where everyone sang San Roque's hymns and a folklore group played songs also. It's so pretty to see a whole village together celebrating how a saint helped them to go over a plague so bad!
Well, I know this blog is not about Faith but sometimes you get touched by all the good energy around a festivity like that!
Sunday, August 17, 2008