During this month of April Valencia has had several public holidays, one of them was for the feast of St. Vincent Martyr, which we already talked about in our blog. The other Monday holiday was for San Vicente Ferrer, one of the most important saints of Valencia and patron saint of the city, along with the Virgen de los Desamparados and the aforementioned San Vicente Mártir.
Saint Vincent Ferrer was a Valencian preacher and Dominican friar who was very fond of travelling on the back of a donkey. According to popular legend and corroborated by the Catholic Church, Saint Vincent Ferrer worked several miracles and most of them were performed by raising his index finger. This fact is what gave him the name of “Sant Vicent el del didet” in Valencia.
In 1431 Pope Eugene IV ordered his canonisation to be studied, which became effective in 1455, and from that moment he became one of the patron saints of the kingdom of Valencia. A city that pays tribute to him with a multitude of images, streets and churches erected in his name.
According to some documents, more than 800 miracles have been attributed to him. Among them, one of the most representative is the “Gift of tongues” by which St. Vincent Ferrer proclaimed the Faith through sermons in his native Valencian language, but other people understood him in their own language.
It is very easy to identify this saint, as his most representative image is that of a saint with his finger pointing to heaven. Although nowadays it is increasingly difficult to see, if you go to an old bar in Ruzafa, enter a typical Valencian house or go to one of the villages in the interior of Valencia, it is still possible to see an image of him.
St. Vincent was a preacher who made numerous trips to different Italian cities and whose sermons attracted crowds of people. During his wanderings around Europe he stayed in Dominican convents and monuments were erected in his name along many of the roads he passed through.
In Valencia, near Calle del Mar, you can visit the birthplace of San Vicente Ferrer in Calle del Pouet de San Vicent. It is a manor house. In what used to be Saint Vincent’s bedroom, various altarpieces are preserved, as well as some outstanding elements of his legend. Among these elements, the miraculous well stands out, in which, according to legend, Saint Vincent Ferrer helped to fight against a cholera epidemic by offering fresh water to the Valencians.
If you want to visit this house, unknown to mass tourism, you can find more information in the following link: