The Blood of Saint Patrick and Singles

Via S. Gregorio Armeno, 80138 Napoli NA, Italia

Simona Bertolaso

Napoli

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Folklore
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Description

Not everyone knows that Naples not only has one patron saint, San Gennaro, but 52, and among them is Santa Patrizia, a saint who is very well known because she is the patron saint of singles. But this is not the only thing that is special about this saint, because very few people know that on August 25th even the blood of St. Patrick melts, and all the singles of the city on this day go to the Church of San Gregorio Armeno, where she is, just to ask for a grace and find love.
Of her uncertain and almost legendary biography we know that Patrizia was born in Constantinople on the 3rd or 4th January 664 AD. (present day Istabul, Turkey) and was a descendant of Constantine the Great, the most influential figure in the Roman Empire who proclaimed freedom of worship and tolerance of Christianity (Edict of Milan 313 AD).
Patrician, of noble and wealthy lineage and of rare beauty, was forced into marriage by her relative Constant II; but from a young age she expressed a vow of virginity, and to keep faith with her oath, she decided to flee with her nurse Aglaia to Rome to receive the blessing of Pope Liberius, abandoning the luxury and privileges of monarchical life, embracing a sober and spiritual life. She soon became the bride of Christ.
Returning to her homeland on the death of her father, she left the royal palace and the rights to the imperial crown and distributed her share of the inheritance to the most needy, eager to set out on a pilgrimage to the Holy Land, to pray at the Holy Sepulchre in Jerusalem.
During the journey by sea she was surprised by a terrible storm that led her to be shipwrecked in Naples on the islet of Megaride. She was rescued by a small community belonging to the monastery of the Basilian friars (Castel dell’Ovo) who assisted her from her arrival until, in a few months, a short illness ended her life at only 21 years old.
A small community of devotees developed around her, and with Aglaia they closed themselves up in seclusion and remained to watch over the body of the virgin without leaving the convent of the friars; the latter were finally forced to surrender their monastery to meet the need.
Legend places the date of St. Patrick’s death on August 25, 685 AD and sanctified in 1625.
With a simple and charitable soul, she was given a very strong cult by the Neapolitan people who welcomed her remains, first in the monastery of Saints Nicandro and Marciano in Caponapoli (where it is said that she prophesied this as her burial place) and later the sacred remains were transferred for historical and social reasons to the beautiful monastery of the Church of San Gregorio Armeno in 1864 (formerly the temple of Ceres) kept by the Crucified Sisters Adorers of the Eucharist, called "Patriziane" according to the monastic order practiced by the saint.

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