Friday, June 13, 2008

Viva Santo Antonio!

Today I was awakened by fireworks at 6 AM. Lots of them. They were celebrating O Dia de Santo Antonio, or the feast day of St. Anthony of Padua. Santo Antonio is a big deal here. He is a Portuguese saint, and he is also syncretized with the Candomblé Orixa Ogum. Ogum is a warrior, a protector, the god of iron and tools amongst other things. In Rio Ogum is syncretized with São George, who in Bahia is Oxossi, the hunter.

Santo Antonio is Evani's patron saint, and her mother's before her. We have a carved wooden figurine of him on a little shelf/shrine in our upstairs hall. In his saintly guise he is portrayed holding a baby. As an Orixa, he is portrayed with a sword, or a machete.

In the houses of Candomblé that worship Ogum here in the city they have prayers to him for up to thirteen nights- from the 1st of the month until tonight. Generally Evani 'sponsors' one of these nights, but this year we were unable to do that. However, we will be heading to Paripe tonight in order to participate.

Viva Santo Antonio!

1 comment:

AkuTyger said...

Ah, that's why you weren't around for our churrasco. I think the universe thinks we are only to meet sometime in August.