November 11, 2009

On St. Martin's Day every child got a lantern

While Martin was still a soldier at Amiens he experienced the vision that became the most-repeated story about his life. He was at the gates of the city of Amiens with his soldiers when he met a scantily dressed beggar. He impulsively cut his own military cloak in half and shared it with the beggar. That night he dreamed of Jesus wearing the half-cloak Martin had given away. He heard Jesus say to the angels: "Here is Martin, the Roman soldier who is not baptised; he has clad me." 
On St. Martin's Day, children in Austria participate in paper lantern processions. Often, a man dressed as St. Martin rides on a horse in front of the procession. The children sing songs about St. Martin and about their lanterns. The food traditionally eaten on the day is goose. According to legend, Martin was reluctant to become bishop, which is why he hid in a stable filled with geese. The noise made by the geese betrayed his location to the people who were looking for him. (Source Wikipedia)


  1. What a great story! Your blog is lovely.

  2. She's so cute with her goosy lantern!:)

    Here in Holland we have ST Maarten ,(Must be the same as your ST Martin) Children go with lanterns to peoples houses and get candy. We do not have the goose story and we don't eat goose that day.

    HAve a great weekend!

  3. My girlie would rather have candy than a goose to eat ;)

  4. What has lanterns got to do with cloaks cut in half?


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