A St. James’ Day celebration

We had a really lovely community celebration for St. James’ Day, and I thought I’d share it with you lovely folks!

I was new to this feast day, so it was really fun & illuminating to dive down the rabbit-hole into traditions shared by generations in celebration of St. James.

We’ve been exploring the liturgical calendar as a family for years, but this past spring, we began gathering with other families to celebrate together. Getting to share in these holidays together has added so much depth to our celebrations – though journeying through the calendar is a wonderful spiritual discipline individually or as a family, I’ve found that it really shines in community.

So, for St. James’ Day, we had a swim party! Kiddos ran around playing, adults got time to chat, and we reflected on St. James and the traditions that have been part of celebrating his feast day for years.

Since St. James is associated with shells – and since oyster-shell grottos, lit with candles, were traditional in England near his feast day – we did a spin-off of this for a simple craft. A friend’s grandmother so sweetly collected discarded oyster shells from a local seafood restaurant, and everyone poured wax into the shells to make candles. Voila, St. James votives!

We also enjoyed Tarta de Santiago, an almond-based traditional cake for St. James’ Day. It was wonderful!! I’d never made a tarta before, so I wasn’t sure what to expect, but it was delicious. It dates back to the middle ages, and you know I always love a good Medieval recipe.

I also brought resources for everyone to take home – info sheets, copies of my St. James paper dolls, and a beautiful prayer by my friend Sally of the Wildroot Parables.

All of these resources are also available for you to use, for free! I’m passionate about sharing the beauty of the liturgical calendar as a spiritual discipline and tool for formation, so I love just getting to share these things with anyone who may find them helpful.

Just head to my Printables page (& sign up for my newsletter there, if you haven’t already) to find all these freebies, including printables to help you set up a St. James section for a liturgical calendar binder (I like to keep binders for the calendar, to help me keep easy references close at hand for each year. Then I add it as I go! More on that later…)

And that’s a wrap for St. James’ Day, till next year! Did you celebrate or mark the day this year?

Best wishes,

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