15:00 Tournament on Piazza Garibaldi of the junior crossbow competitiors
16:30 Piazza Cavour towards the cathedral: the march in traditional costumes
17:00 Holy mess in honour of the Saint Patron in the Cathedral
The tournament Trofeo di San Cerbone takes this year extraordinarily place on 6 October 2019 together with the food festivel Farina del tuo Sacco Massa Marittima. The particularity of this exhibition is that the target shield is positioned on the tower of the cathedral instead of the facade of the municipality. The event will start with a beautiful march of 150 members in medievel costumes. Officials, flagwavers, musicians and crossbow competitors. An other particularity is that more competitors will be shooting simultanously. From about 14:30 march in medievel costumes from Piazza Cavour to Piazza Garibaldi. The trophy will be held by the Società Terzieri Massetani and other crossbow companies.
San Cerbone is the patron saint of Massa Marittima and is celebrated on 10 October.
Cerbone was born around 493 a.C. and raised by Christian parents on the northern coast of Africa. He belonged to the Berber ethnic group and was appointed bishop by Regulus, the North African evangelist.
Because of the Vandal invasion of South Mediterranean, the christian Cerbone escaped from Africa and arrived onto the Tuscan coast, where he became Bishop of Populonia.
In 573 he was forced to escape again, because of the invasion of the Lombards in the area of Piombino and he went to the Elba island, where he died.
His relics were found inside the main altar of Massa Marittima’s Cathedral and they are now buried inside the Ark made by Goro di Gregorio.
There are many legends about San Cerbone, that are represented on the marble ark inside the Cathedral and on the main façade. One of the most famous episodes is related to the Holy trip to Rome:
Pope Virgilio himself summoned Saint Cerbone to Rome because of the increasing complaints coming from the population of Populonia: the believers were forced to wake up too early in the morning in order to attend Mass, usually celebrated by Cerbone before dawn.
During the trip, the bishop performed a series of miracles: the most famous refers to the episode when he milked two hinds in order to feed the starving people who went along with him.
Once he arrived at the gates of Rome, he healed some men affected by deadly fevers. He then persuaded a group of geese to follow him and to be offered to the Pope as a present. Cerbone then, making the sign of the cross, freed the animals, which flew around the Pope.
The bishop was then asked to celebrate Mass in the presence of the Pope, revealing the reason why the ceremony had to be held so early: during the Eucharist the Angels themselves miraculously appeared and began to sing. Pope Virgilio could’t do nothing but recognize the holiness of Cerbone.