Every June 13, the Church celebrates the feast of one of the best known and most venerated saints in the world, Saint Anthony of Padua, Franciscan, of Portuguese origin, priest and doctor of the Church. The first-born son of a very well-off family, his birth name was Fernando de Bulhôes. Around 1210, he entered the monastery of canons regular of San Agustín de San Vicente de Fora, near Lisbon. As his family and friends did not accept his vocation and asked him to abandon it, to avoid pressure, he renounced the family inheritance and moved to the Santa Cruz de Coimbra monastery. He changed his order and entered the Franciscan Friars Minor where, in 1220, at the age of 25 he adopted the name of Antonio. After a brief novitiate and driven by the example of the Franciscan martyrs, he embarked for Morocco. But shortly after arriving, he contracted malaria, a disease that would leave him with lifelong consequences. After a fruitful preaching, Saint Anthony died in Padua on June 13, 1231.
San Antonio is highly revered in our country and the city and church that bear his name are celebrating. According to tradition, he is known for finding a boyfriend or husband for single women. There are even songs like “Palo bonito” whose lyrics count: “I have San Antonio turned upside down. If he doesn’t give me a girlfriend, nobody straightens him ”. In this regard, Professor Ramón Silva clarifies that these customs are part of popular beliefs, therefore, they are not real. “It is often said that if the young ladies ask San Antonio for a boyfriend on June 13, the saint grants them, but a drunk and maintained boyfriend. The historian and researcher Margarita Miró Ibars according to consultations she made in the community of Caacupemí, Areguá, where every June 14, they celebrate the saint with a great patronal feast: “They celebrate a day later and on one occasion when I was invited as a jury of the event, I consulted with many couples if it was true that San Antonio gave a drunk husband, and they said it was not true, “he says. For his part, Lucio Ruiz Díaz, host of the TV program Tradition and culture, details that these rituals, such as turning the saint upside down, are part of the popular belief that is transmitted from generation to generation. “And they still persist in our days,” he highlights. And you, do you ask San Antonio to find you a boyfriend? “Every Sunday!”.