Lighting the Way: Preparing for the St. Martin Festival with a DIY Lantern Tutorial

The festival of St Martin, celebrated in Waldorf schools worldwide, is a heartwarming event that illuminates the spirit of kindness and sharing. Named after St. Martin of Tours, a former Roman soldier renowned for his humility and compassion, this festival is a beacon of light in the dark, chilly days of autumn. Children carrying handmade lanterns participate in evening processions, their faces aglow with the warmth of the lanterns. They sing traditional songs that recount the story of St Martin, who famously shared his cloak with a freezing beggar during a snowstorm. The festival inspires us all to embrace the values of generosity and empathy, just as St Martin did, and to share our warmth and light with others as the days grow colder.

Here’s a simple lantern-making tutorial to get you ready for the St. Martin’s festival:

Materials needed:

  1. Tracing or translucent paper
  2. Cardboard
  3. Glue
  4. Scissors
  5. Leaves/dried flowers
  6. LED tea light

Step 1: Start by cutting your card and translucent paper to the templete above.

Step 2: With your leafs or dried flower stick one onto the translucent paper, you can stick another piece over the top like a sandwich if you would like.

Step 3: repeat in all the windows

Step 4: Fold the card along the lines and glue closed

Step 5: Use string to make a handle. Attach it firmly to the top of your lantern. ( we use staples to attached these usually)

Step 6: Place the LED tea light inside your lantern.

And there you have it! A beautiful, glowing lantern ready for the procession. Remember, the St. Martin festival is a time for sharing and generosity. As you carry your lantern, let it be a light that carries the spirit of charity and goodwill into the night.