SAINT SEBASTIAN – JANUARY 20

On January 20 the festivity of the patron saint of the town is celebrated: San Sebastian. A party that little by little and with the collaboration of all the neighbors of the town are recovering the old traditions. On that day, a traditional slaughter takes place in the town square first thing in the morning with a tasting of migas; at noon the Eucharist in honor of the Patron Saint takes place followed by the procession. At midday we taste the exquisite products of the slaughter and other delicacies of our rich gastronomy in a meal of brotherhood. During the afternoon there is a popular verbena, and in one of its breaks there is a snack of chocolate with churros (fritters). The festivities end with a fireworks display.

EVENTS
SAN SEBASTIÁN

In the Middle Ages, and even in the sixteenth century, there was a terrible enemy for the human being, who did not distinguish between rich and poor, friars and laymen, men and women, children and adults…. and that from time to time decimated the population and left some villages and places half-empty, pronouncing or hearing its name caused dread. This enemy was the plague. Faced with a situation like this, where the scarce knowledge of medicine was clearly insufficient in an unequal fight, men and women clung to faith and supernatural beliefs, represented by the Holy Martyrs, who are considered by the Catholic religion as intercessors before God and defenders against the plague.

Being this reason almost enough to justify the existence of a chapel of the Holy Martyrs is not the only one, because in the fourteenth century a royal decree ordered that in all towns and cities to honor the Holy Martyrs, as a result of the plague that in 1348 devastated Europe and the Iberian Peninsula. As proof of this, in the villages of the area there is evidence of a hermitage of the Holy Martyrs in: Salvatierra de Santiago, Zarza de Montánchez, Valdefuentes, Montánchez,…

As a general rule and with some exceptions, the Martyr Saints are Saint Fabian and Saint Sebastian, and sometimes Saint Roque. His feast day was celebrated on January 20, since this was the day of the celebration of Saint Fabian and Saint Sebastian, who were not related to each other, only that of having died on January 20. Saint Fabian was a pope who was martyred on January 20, 250. Saint Sebastian was a centurion of the Praetorian Guard who was martyred on January 20, 288. It was the Christian custom of celebrating a saint’s day
the day of his death, which united St. Fabian and St. Sebastian. However, with the passage of time the figure of San Fabián was forgotten, so that many hermitages originally dedicated to the Holy Martyrs have become, with the passage of time, temples under the invocation only of San Sebastián, as has happened in Arroyomolinos or Torrequemada, celebrating the feast on January 20.
In Botija, the celebration of San Sebastian has undergone ups and downs throughout history, with periods of heyday and others of near oblivion. It is currently in full force, with a program of events that combines religious events with those of a ludic and recreational nature.
festive.