Saturday, April 20, 2013

The Feast of St. George

St. George is another great example of a saint who many have heard of, but not many can tell you anything about him. Other than the famous legend of the Dragon, his occupation as a soldier, and that he is the patron saint of England, I actually didn't know much about him. Having two little boys though makes this one of our household's favorite saints. What better than to learn about a saint, even if it is in legend, known for his immense courage and bravery that he uses to protect and defend others? 

Saint George was born in the 3rd century in what is now Turkey. He became a Roman soldier, and under Diocletian's rule, he was beheaded. There are many conflicting stories about why he was killed and the details as to whether or not there were miracles of him raising from the dead several times before succumbing to death. However, we do know that the Church hails St. George as a martyr and he is included in the Fourteen Holy Helpers (amongst whom St. Blaise is also counted). England is one among many that have taken St. George as their patron saint, but it is the most well known, so we are going to be celebrating the day in an English fashion.

In keeping with the legends about St. George and the dragon that he defeated, I highly suggest you check out this fabulously illustrated and retold version of the tale: Saint George and the Dragon by Trina Schart Hyman + illustrated by Margaret Hodges. There are several other depictions, but this one is by far my favorite among the ones I've seen.

For meal ideas to celebrate the feast, I suggest going British. So many great British recipes for both main meals and dessert can be found here on BBC's Good Food. I think I shall try my hand at a Yorkshire Pudding, and then incorporate St. George's famous red cross onto cupcakes, cookies, or something of the sort as a dessert.

Some other common English dishes to whet your appetite:
Shepherd's Pie, Steak + Kidney Pie, Bangers (Sausages) + Mash, Beef Wellington, or even a hearty stew (such as this one - just switch out the Guinness for a hearty English beer like Fuller's London Porter)

For activity ideas, check out these Links for crafts that are perfect for young children:

15 Kids Ideas for St. George's Day by Cathy James

St. George and the Dragon Crafts by Catholic Icing

And lastly, though you may not be able to purchase in time for this St. George's Day, look at these fabulous handmade products featuring knights, dragons, and the like:

Templar Tunic by Penelope's Costumes

Wooden Dragon Toy by Armadillo Dreams

Wooden Toy Knight with Shield  by Little Woodlanders

Image source:
1 - St. George and the Dragon from State Russian Museum
2 - Saint George Killing the Dragon by Martorell

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This post The Feast of St. George first appeared on Two Os Plus More on 20 April 2013

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