LUMINARA: THE LIGHT PARADE
My personal view of the famous Luminara of Pisa, an ancient candlelight festival.
It is dedicated to San Ranieri since 1688, when the grand duke of Tuscany, Cosimo de’ Medici,
decided to put his body into a precious, marble tomb.
San Ranieri is the patron saint of the Tuscan city of Pisa and the protector of all travelers. When he was young he grew up in a Christian Catholic atmosphere, but during his adolescence he forgot about the principles that had accompanied him, until the day in which he met a friar, Alberto di Corsica, who turned him into a man of faith. This acquaintance brought Ranieri on the right path and he decided to follow his spiritual guide. He confessed all his sins and cried so many tears that he became blind, but after a prodigy, he began to see again.
Furthermore, one beautiful day he had a vision: an eagle carrying a light told him to “show the light to those people who (like him) where in darkness”. At sunset, every June 16, thousands of candles previously put onto Pisa’s bridges, doors and windows are lit up. The result is absolutely magical: the river Arno mirrors all these lights and the atmosphere is warm and mystical.