Catholics around the world are celebrating the Christ’s resurrection from the dead or Easter, which also marks the end of the Holy Week and the end of Lent and the end of the Easter Triduum (Maundy Thursday, Good Friday and Easter Sunday). Easter also marks the beginning of the Liturgical Year. Many Catholics attended the Easter Vigil on Holy Saturday, however on Sunday, the services during daytime are shorter. Following mass, different countries have varied traditions for the day.
Here’s a look at how other countries celebrate Easter around the world.
Children in France wake up in search of Easter eggs around their house and garden. Other traditions associated with Easter in France include the cloche volant or flying bells, as French believe that the church bells in France fly to the Vatican on Good Friday and return on Easter Sunday. In line with this tradition, church bells do not ring from Good Friday to Easter Sunday morning. Another tradition in France includes the rolling of raw eggs. In the town of of Bessieres near Toulouse, a giant omelette is prepared on Easter Monday for the community to enjoy. The tradition, which goes back to the time of Napoleon, will see some 50 volunteers cracking open 15,000 eggs in a giant pot.
In a predominantly Hindu country, Christian communities in India celebrate Easter choosing their own traditional meat as this varies from one community to another. The Christians in Mumbai usually have duck and rabbit on Easter. The Diocese of Vasai in Mumbai is expected to receive more than 200 adults into the Church through baptism. Up in the north, in Punjab, Christians opt for chicken or lamb while in Kerala the choice of meat varies from community to community and includes chicken or mutton, or beef or a dry roast and pork. To the east, in West Bengal, Christians traditionally eat a chicken stew with bread for breakfast known as buffarth.
After Christmas, Easter is the most important Italian holiday, with an additional day, Easter Monday or Pasquetta. On the day children receive Easter eggs on the day. In Florence commemorate the return of a Florentine knight, Pazzino di Ranieri de’ Pazzi with a Sunday procession during which a 30-foot tall antique cart is pulled by oxen during a parade of 150 soldiers, musicians and other people. The procession starts at Porta al Prato and ends in Piazza del Duomo. When the cart arrives at Piazza del Duomo, a dove-shaped rocket holding an olive branch is shot towards a cart loaded with fireworks which sets them off. Known for their food, the Italian traditional food for Easter Sunday varies from North to South, while one may grab colomba in Lombardy, you can opt for aceddu cu’ l’ova or a special kind of Easter cookies in Catania.
Easter in Australia is celebrated in Autumn. The Easter bilby is chosen over the Easter bunny, a small endangered marsupial rodent, however the game remains the same, children will still have to search for their Easter eggs. In Sydney the Royal Easter Show takes place during which the best produce is exhibited.
The burning of Judas
The burning of Judas is an Easter time tradition in various countries including Brazil, Paraguay, Mexico, Venezuela and Uruguay, as well as some parts of Spain, Portugal, Cyprus, Greece and the Philippines. The ritual involves effigy of Judas Iscariot which is burnt in a central location or sometimes exploded with fireworks.
Various parishes around the island organise a procession on Sunday morning with the statue of the resurrection of Christ accompanied by brass bands on the street. At the end of the procession, the statue-bearers run the final with the statue back into the Church.
How will you spend your Easter?