For over two decades, on the first full weekend in December, we welcomed the Christmas season and celebrated our church's Scandinavian roots with an annual fair and St. Lucia Festival!
Beginning in 2020 and due to pandemic restrictions, we suspended both Fair and Festival.
This year we are returning to an in-person St. Lucia Festival, celebrated during our Sunday worship service at 10 AM on Sunday, December 18, 2022.
The St. Lucia Festival is a Swedish Christian tradition that dates from the 14th century. According to the old Julian calendar, December 13 was the longest night of the year, and thus marked the first step toward spring, with its promise of light and sunshine. It is on this date that the people of Sweden celebrate the Lucia Festival. Christian legend has it that the Romans betrayed Lucia. Later, Vikings impressed by her faith, are said to have brought her legend to Scandinavia from Sicily, where she is the patron saint of fishermen.
We tell the St. Lucia legend and sing Swedish carols. A young woman from the congregation is crowned the "Queen of Light" followed by traditional Scandinavian refreshments in our lobby. The St. Lucia Festival has become a favorite Christmas tradition for many Mainers, whether they're Swedish, Lutheran, or otherwise!