In 2023, as every year, Saint Barbara will be commemorated in the Minett UNESCO Biosphere. This tradition commemorates the heritage and life of miners who, along with architects, geologists, mathematicians and firemen, honour Saint Barbara as their patron saint.
On the 1st of December 2022, this tradition was included in the UNESCO National Inventory of Intangible Cultural Heritage and the candidacy for international recognition, led by the Polish UNESCO Commission, was launched and could be deposited and accepted as early as 2024.
In many towns and cities in the south of Luxembourg, Saint Barbara is honoured in the days around the 4th of December.
Here is a brief overview of the celebrations in each town:
The festivities begin this Saturday, the 2nd of December, at 16:30, in the municipality of Pétange.
The ceremony starts at the chapel of Saint Barbara in the Hary Godefroy park in Rodange. The procession with the statue of the saint will then go to the church of Rodange, where a Holy Mass will be celebrated. The final wine of honour will be offered by the Petange Town Council, which organises this ceremony every year in collaboration with the “Amicale des pompiers du Centre d’Incendie et de Secours Pétange” and the “Arbechter Ënnerstëtzungsverein Rodange”.
In Rumelange, the “Boarbelendag” is traditionally celebrated in and around the “Musée des Mines”. The procession takes place on Monday, the 4th of December and starts at 9:30 from the rue du Parc to the museum, where a commemorative ceremony is held and then a mass is celebrated in the gallery of the National Mining Museum by the auxiliary bishop Léon Wagener.
Every year since 1954 the “Comité Sainte Barbe Téiteng” organises the celebration of the patron saint of those who worked in the dangerous mines of the Minett.
The commune of Kayl and the Sainte-Barbara Committee invite everyone to take part in this tradition, which is very symbolic for our region.
In memory of the deceased miners, firecrackers will be fired at 8:00 and 10:00 next Monday at Hesselsberg. The official programme begins on Monday, the 4th of December at 9:45 at the Schungfabrik in Tétange. This is also the starting point for the procession to the grave of a deceased miner, where flowers will be laid. Afterwards (around 11:15), a mass will be celebrated in the Tétange Cultural Centre, followed by a drink offered by the Aldermen’s council.
In the evening, there is also a popular celebration in honour of Saint Barbara. These festivities begin at 19:30 in the restaurant “A Jangada an Hussen”.
The City of Esch also celebrates the tradition of Saint Barbara, the patron saint of miners and firemen. Traditionally, firecrackers are set off this Monday, 4th of December shortly after 11:00 to celebrate this special day in the heart of the “Minett-Metropol”. The parade through the centre of Esch is followed by two wreath-laying ceremonies at the “Monument aux Morts” and the “Monument du Mineur”. After the procession and the wreath-laying ceremony, the City of Esch invites to a short reception in the City Hall.
Since the “Bäerbelendag” has not been properly celebrated in Dudelange in recent years, the “DKollektiv” has decided to revive this tradition in the country’s fourth largest city. Starting at 17:00 , on Monday 4th of December, they invite you to the first edition of their Barbara celebration, organised together with partner organisations such as the “Amicale vun den Diddelenger Pompjeeën”, the “Ferro Forum” and the “IK-CNCI”.
Here is the programme for the day in Dudelange:
- 17:00 Meeting point in the car park of the “CCRA Opderschmelz / CNA”.
- 17:30 Start of the procession at the “Porte d’Italie” (Rue Tattebierg, near number 6)
- 17:50 Pause at the former entrance to the agglomeration; Launch of firecrackers; Unveiling of a plaque commemorating the mining activities in Dudelange
- 18:00 Procession across the road bridge to the “Neischmelz” quarter
- 18:30 Arrival at VEWA with drinks and sandwiches
- 20:00 Conference “Diddelenger Geschichten” by Raymond Nepgen in the CCRD Opderschmelz
In the municipality of Differdange, Saint Barbara has been commemorated for many years at the Lasauvage mine.
As every year, the meeting point is in front of the Brasserie de la Mine, where a wreath is laid at the Monument des Mineurs on Monday the 4th of December at 19:00. Then the procession with the statue of the patron saint of the miners will go to the banqueting hall of Lasauvage where a mass will be celebrated. At the end of the festivities, the wine of honour is served in the Doihl mine. The “Minièresbunn” provides transport to the tunnels of the former iron ore mine.
To get to Lasauvage, the city council of Differdange offers a shuttle service from the car park of Differdange-Centre.