Every year, on August 1st, Xátiva celebrates the Feast of its Patron Saint, Martir Sant Feliu (Martir São Félix).
Early in the morning mass is celebrated in honor of Sant Feliu.
Later, in the surroundings of the chapel, there is a typical popular lunch with hundreds of participants.
Anyone visiting the chapel dedicated to this saint in Xátiva (capital of La Costera – one of the districts of the Valencian Community) will find two images of Sant Feliu on the main altar.
«According to the book "L'Església de Sant Feliu", by professor (..) Agustí Ventura, in the centuries of our literary and cultural decline, false chronicles generated a legend that was taken up by Escolano: some supposed saints, Feliu, Arquileu and Fortunat would have brought Christianity to Xativa, sent by the bishop of Lió, Sant Ireneu, as some ancient saints sing (...).”
During the persecution, they would have hidden in a cave under the castle and martyred in Valencia on April 23, 204, the day that would later become the feast of this Sant Feliu de Lió.
However, an annotation was found in the ecclesiastical archives, dated 1410 that reads: Jo, Garcés, I said mass the first day of August to Sant Feliu de Girona (“I, Garcés, said mass on the first day of August in Sant Feliu de Girona”). This writing confirms the thesis that traditionally Xàtiva celebrated the Feast of the Patron Saint on the first day of August and not on the 23rd of April, therefore Xàtiva always celebrated Sant Feliu de Girona as the patron saint and not Sant Feliu de Lió.
Around 1643, to comply with a decree of Pope Urban VIII, which intended to reduce the festivities only to the patron saint, Xàtiva began to honor and celebrate Sant Feliu de Girona. On October 17, 1643, a solution was reached that satisfied the supporters of the two saints. They then named Sant Feliu de Girona patron saint of the city, and placed the two saints side by side on the main altar.
Thus, in the hermitage of Sant Feliu de Xàtiva, we find two saints Felius! Sant Feliu de Girona, the deacon and martyr of Girona and the patron saint of Xàtiva, and another, Sant Feliu de Lió, to celebrate the festivities of the saint of Lió!