Posts tagged ‘giglio’

July 7th, 2012

mikkipedia 2012-07-07 10:52:49



italian lei

sky flower

pork braciole

tower in sky

front of the church

the monsignor doing a duet

July 7th, 2012

The boat, with St. Paolino



The boat, with St. Paolino

July 7th, 2012

the boat on Flickr.The boat, with St. Paolino



the boat on Flickr.

The boat, with St. Paolino

July 7th, 2012

tower dance with capos on Flickr.paranza (lifters)



tower dance with capos on Flickr.

paranza (lifters)

July 7th, 2012

tower rotates with pan up on Flickr.So the paranza (lifters) are…



tower rotates with pan up on Flickr.

So the paranza (lifters) are carrying this 4 story (or something) high statue, plus a full band and the priests.

July 7th, 2012

monsignor duets and pan up on Flickr.the monsignor sings



monsignor duets and pan up on Flickr.

the monsignor sings

July 7th, 2012

prizes



prizes

July 7th, 2012

float prep under the bqe



float prep under the bqe

July 7th, 2012

It’s Giglio/Our Lady of Mount Carmel Feast Week in my…









It’s Giglio/Our Lady of Mount Carmel Feast Week in my neighborhood, one of my favorite weeks of the year.  From the website:

This feast, which has been taking place in Brooklyn for over 100 years, commemorates an extraordinary bit of southern Italian history which culminated in the canonization of an erstwhile bishop  of the small city of Nola.  Not even Catholic until his thirty-seventh year, Paulinus was destined to become a renowned religious hero of that region.  Though he was to serve as Bishop of Nola from 409 AD to 431 AD, it was an alleged episode, that took place shortly after his elevation to bishop, for which the Nolani hold him in such high regard.

The story, which is passed on through the generations on both sides of the Atlantic, is that around 410 AD, North African pirates overran the town of Nola.  In the chaos, Bishop Paolino was able to flee into the countryside with some of the children.  Upon his return, Paolino learned, from a sobbing widow that many of the young men, her son included, had been abducted into slavery.   Moved to compassion, Paolino  offered himself in exchange for the boy and was ferried off, a prisoner of the brigands.  While in North Africa, word of the courage and self-sacrifice of Paolino spread and became known to a certain Turkish sultan.  Taken with the tale of altruism, the sultan intervened, negotiating for the freedom of this holy man.  Through the sultan ‘s efforts, Paolino  and his paesani, were freed.

Overjoyed by his safe return, the entire town greeted him carrying lilies, symbolic of love and purity.  That joyous homecoming jubilee is considered the very first observance of what would develop into an annual sacred event.  Through the years, various trade guilds (farmer(ortolamo), butcher(beccaio), tailor(sarto), breadmaker(panettiere), blacksmith(fabbra), cobblers(calzolaio), deli merchants(salumiere), and wine makers(bettoliere) ) began to compete to produce the most sensational display of lilies.  Over time, these displays became more flamboyant.

Today, although still called lilies (gigli), they have evolved into huge flower-laden steeples of wood, 50 feet or more in height.  In Nola, these gigli structures and a boat (la barca) are carried through the streets on the shoulders of hundreds of men, in remembrance of the return of Paolino to Nola.  The atmosphere is quite competitive and each guild hires the best lifters they can secure, because the carrying of the gigli is judged.  Creativity of construction and musical accompaniment is also scrutinized even after the formal competition ends, and the men of Nola  carry and dance the gigli throughout the night.

This is the tradition that was transplanted to Brooklyn, New York by the Nolani  immigrants.  It would be embraced stateside by all of those Italians who had emigrated from towns and villages surrounding Nola.  World War II diverted the community’s energies (and men) in another direction and the Giglio Feast was discontinued temporarily.  It would not be until June 22,1949 (the feast day of San Paolino) that this feast was reinstituted.

the 1950s, despite the controversy it caused in the community, The Shrine Church Of Our Lady of Mount Carmel took over the reins of this important feast.  Almost immediately, the church combined the Giglio Feast with the feast honoring Our Lady of Mount Carmel.  Since 1954 and the merging of the two saint days into one celebration (known as the Cooperative Feast), the Giglio  Feast has been celebrated in July, with all activities leading up to its culmination on July 16th, the feast day of Our Lady of Mount Carmel.  Since the Cooperative Feast came into existence, there has been a juxtaposing of religious, secular, traditional, and ethnic components within this celebration.

There are several parades throughout the week, a couple of times a day, sometimes giving out bread, sometimes with the Giglio Tower and the big wooden boat. sometimes with the Our Lady statue, sometimes various combinations. You can see preparations going on for weeks—they park the floats under the freeway to get them ready. There is a “Giglio Boys” private club on Leonard, where they train the capos. At the festival there are rides and amazing food and they lift the tower a few times every night, with lots of singing. There is one priest in particular who sings some Sinatra, I think I have video of it. These photos are from last year, mostly out of my window, the parades go right by. It makes me so so so happy, the tradition, the ritual, the community, the ferris wheel, the singing. It is one thing that hasn’t changed in a place where every block has changed, mostly against our will.