The rite of the "Faglia", a huge torch more than ten metres tall, is a very old one and is very deeply felt by the people of Oratino. The reeds needed to make the torch are collected by special teams on the days preceding the feast day.

In these circumstances the young people, who often take the reeds withouth the approval of their owners, give proof of skill and ability, because they must not be found out and caught. After cutting, the reeds are taken to the Casette district where they are beaten and tied.

The most exciting moment is when the torch is lit: hundreds of people carry the torch onto the church square where it is lifted by a hoist and burnt in the presence of attentive and enthusiastic spectators.

It is a religious tradition celebrated on Christmas Eve, but it conceals its pagan origin linked with the European cult of fire and especially the fires of the winter solstice.

The lighting of the fire on one of the shortest nights in the year had a dual significance: on one hand it intended to mime the power of the sun, and on the other to celebrate the importance of purification and keeping evil away from man's soul.

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