Tuesday, October 19

The Virgin of Remedy – Information

When these lines see the light we will be a few days away from the celebration of the festival of the Virgen del Remedio, Patron Saint of the City of Alicante. In addition, on October 28, 1950, the City Council held an Extraordinary Plenary Session in which the mayor, Francisco Alberola Such, also proposed to appoint her as Mayor of Perpetual Honor, imposing the accreditation badges on her three days later. Later, in 1975, the then mayor, Francisco García Romeu, presented him with the corresponding command staff. In all this it had a lot to do that it was precisely 1950 the year designated by Pope Pius XII to proclaim the Dogma of the Faith of the Assumption of Mary into Heaven. The Dogmatic Declaration took place on November 1 of that year.

Poster announcing the «Great festivals» that were celebrated in 1900. BUT

It is believed that the devotion to the Virgen del Remedio was probably brought to Alicante by the Trinitarian Fathers, of whose Order she is the Patron, in the mid-fourteenth century. The first processions in his honor of which there is evidence as well as the first news of the cult of the Virgin under the invocation of the Remedy date from approximately 1535. Regarding the Brotherhood, there is news of its existence from the end of the 16th century. Precisely in the year 1600 what had been the Parish of San Nicolás until then was erected as a Collegiate Church. The first dean, Don Miguel Ángel Zaragoza Heredia, on behalf of the newly constituted Cabildo, requested from the Diocesan Prelate the recognition of the Brotherhood of the Virgen del Remedio, in order to promote and channel worship and devotion to it, although it is three years later, in 1603, when it was recognized in Rome by the Holy See through the Pontifical Concession for its creation granted by Pope Clement VIII on May 31 of that year.

In Alicante its festival is celebrated on August 5, date on which, in 1648, a procession through the city took place in Alicante, at the request of the municipal and religious councils, with the image of the Virgin accompanied by the Holy Face as response to a cholera or plague epidemic, according to the source, which was ravaging the city at the time. The tour ended at the Church of San Nicolás, where after Mass and Te Deum it is said that several healings took place, as happened while both images were parading through the streets of the city. For this reason and in its veneration, works were carried out in the church, remembering that after them, specifically in 1768, the upper central niche of the main altar, above the altarpiece of San Nicolás, would be in honor of the Virgen del Remedio. In 1878, the Municipal Corporation and the Collegiate Council agreed to celebrate jointly and henceforth solemn festivals in honor of the Patron, precisely on August 5.

The acts of its celebration begin on August 3 with the Alborada in the Plaza del Ayuntamiento, at 10:00 p.m. by the Municipal Symphonic Band accompanied by groups such as the Tabaquera Choir, Thevenet Choir, Orfeón de Alicante, Orfeón Cantábile, Orfeón Mare Nostrum or Peña Lírica Alicantina, among others. At the end, the Salve a la Virgen del Remedio, the Anthem of Alicante, that of the Valencian Community and the National Anthem are performed.

On days 4 and 5, at 12:00 hours, 21 Ordinance Salutes are fired. This last day, at 7:00 p.m., the Holy Mass presided over by the Bishop of the Diocese takes place in the Cathedral of San Nicolás, thus considered thanks to the intervention of Pope John XXIII in 1959. Next, Procession, back to its headquarters, National Anthem and again 21 Salvas de Ordinance.

In 1919, the dean Don Modesto Nájera drew up a regulation for the Arch Confraternity and the Honorary Presidency was offered to the Bishop of the Diocese, then of Orihuela, Don Ramón Plaza y Blanco and His Majesty the Queen Mother, Doña. María Cristina de Habsburgo, for which from that date she has held the title of Royal.

Every year, on June 21 and 22, during the central days of Les Fogueres, Official City Festivities, a Flower Offering is made by foguerers and barraquers that is considered the oldest of all those celebrated in Spain since it dates from 1941, being at that time President of the Management Commission Ramón Guilabert Davo.

His Pontifical Coronation, authorized by His Holiness Pope John Paul II on April 4, 1998, took place on November 22 of that year, the feast of Christ the King, coinciding with the 350th Anniversary of the aforementioned miracle of 1648, at the Stadium « José Rico Pérez »of Alicante before 40,000 people and was presided over by the Bishop of the Diocese, Don Victorio Oliver Domingo. In it, José Ángel Guirao made an emotional speech in what was his last public appearance before his death at the beginning of January 1999. The crowns of the Child Jesus and the Virgin of the Remedy were made by the Valencian jeweler Miguel Orrico.

The Virgin of Remedy has a Prayer composed by Tomás Rocamora, which is recorded with the organ sequence that Carlos Catalá elaborated, based on the arrangement by J. Lacalle made in 1988. It also has a Coronation Hymn with lyrics by José Antonio Berenguer and music by Manuel Ramos Aznar, approved by the Coronation Commission on June 5, 1998, as well as a sung processional march entitled “Salve a la Virgen del Remedio” composed by Bernabé Sanchís Sanz in November 2008.

So far a little history about Our Lady the Virgin of Remedy, Patron and Mayor of Perpetual Honor of the City of Alicante, as well as the festivities that are celebrated in her honor.


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