What Are Some Traditions of St. Joseph's Day?


Quick Answer

Celebrants of St. Joseph's Day, occurring each year on March 19th, typically hold large feasts in honor of Joseph for purportedly preventing a famine in Italy during the Middle Ages. It is also common for people to dress in red clothing to celebrate the day.

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Full Answer

The celebration of St. Joseph's Day is popular among Italian-Americans, and specifically Sicilians, who regard Joseph as their patron saint. Because the celebration typically occurs during Lent, meat is never served as a part of a St. Joseph's Day feast. Rather, fava beans and food containing breadcrumbs are staples. The fava beans are integral to the celebration because historically during a drought when all other crops failed, the fava bean would still thrive. The breadcrumbs represent saw dust in honor of Joseph's work as a carpenter.

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