Faces and PlacesGenoa

Saint John’s Night – Celebrations

By June 21, 2011 No Comments
[nggallery id=21]June 24 is the start of the celebrations to honour Genoa’s patron saint, Saint John the Baptist. On the night of Saint John’s Eve, Genoa comes alive with games, music in the piazzas, shows and fireworks. At midnight the traditional bonfire is lit in the main square of the city.

On the 24th, there is a procession from the Cathedral of San Lorenzo to the Porto Antico. People follow the Ark containing the saint’s relics.

According to the legend, the Cathedral of San Lorenzo holds the alleged ashes of St John the Baptist, stolen during the Holy Crusades.

When the procession arrives at the city’s Old Port, a ritual benediction takes place. In fact, the Cardinal blesses the sea and the city. Finally, the remains of the saint are taken back to San Lorenzo Cathedral and the cerimony is solemnly concluded.

More pictures of the procession can be seen on the Journal La Repubblica – Genova

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