Novelda turns to St Mary Magdalene
THE statue of St Mary Magdalene, Novelda’s patron saint, usually remains in the La Mola sanctuary high above the town.
Each year on July 22, the saint’s feast day, the small statue is carried down on a huge flower-decked float by local women to the San Pedro Apostol church in a multitudinous procession.
This year the saint’s statue was brought down early last Sunday, March 22. With Covid-19 cases in the town and the death of an elderly nun from the virus, Novelda’s population are seeking the protection of their patron saint as they have in former times when threatened by plague or epidemics.
The revered statue was taken down to the church in the parish priest’s car, followed by Novelda’s mayor, the chief of the Policia Local and the sanctuary’s caretaker.
People sang the saint’s hymn from their balconies and bells rang out as the priest’s car approached San Pedro Apostol.
“At such difficult times we have to go on fighting, keep hope alive and remain united,” the parish priest Fr Francisco Jose Rayaos said once the statue was safely inside.