As the day of Saint Barnabas is celebrated by the Catholics

Apostle Barnabas was among the first seventy disciples of Christ. After the death of Jesus, Barnabas and the Apostle Paul made missionary voyages through Cyprus, Pergia, and Antioch aimed at spreading Christianity. Barnabas was killed by Jews in Cyprus in the city of Salamin: he was stoned and thrown on a bonfire. Barnabas’ nephew Mark subsequently found his body undamaged by fire. The burial place of the apostle began to be called the “place of health”, as many patients received healing there. A temple was later erected on this site, and the relics of the saint were transferred to the altar.

On St. Barnabas’ Day, June 11, solemn services are held in all Catholic temples. The residents of the Spanish city of Logroño (La Rioja province) celebrate this holiday. Saint Barnabas is the patron saint of their city. The holiday in this city began to be celebrated from 1521, when the Spanish defeated the French attempting through Logroño to penetrate Castile. A museum of memory was opened in the city, where residents displayed war trophies and weapons, and on the tallest towers of the temples placed utensils, which were able to defend against the enemy. Subsequently, in 1522, a “Vow to Saint Barnabas” was created on the order of observances that are still observed.

During the holiday, residents of Logroño dress up in antique costumes of the era, a medieval market opens, camps of French and Logronian troops break. A costumed performance is held in which a battle of the Spanish and French is played out in front of the city gates. The Arch of Triomphe, located at the beginning of Calle Portalles, is decorated for the feast with branches of boxwood. It is the only surviving arch of those that were installed in all the gates of the city to commemorate the victory over the French. Locals of Logroño keep the belief about being lucky in love, you need to walk under it three times. To commemorate the feast of Saint Barnabas, residents and visitors of the city traditionally pick up a pair of boxwood leaves.

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