Unique and Un-beatable Easter Traditions Across the world
From the boxes of marshmallow eggs piling up in the supermarkets, you have probably guessed that Easter is almost upon us. Easter is a Christian holiday that commemorates Jesus Christ’s death and resurrection. The holiday completes the “Passion of Christ”, a sequence of activities and holidays that starts with Lent (a 40-day duration of fasting, prayer, and sacrifice) and ends with Holy Week. Holy Week has a series of religious events like Holy Thursday (also known as “Maundy Thursday”), Good Friday (the commemoration of Jesus’ crucifixion) and Easter Sunday.
While most Christians in South Africa celebrate by attending mass at their local church, eating pickled fish and collecting excessive amounts of chocolate. Easter is a holiday of high religious significance in the Christian faith, though Easter traditions differ greatly across countries and cultures across the world. Some traditions dating back to pre-Christian, pagan times. As we prepare to welcome the festivities, here are a few ways that people are celebrating Easter 2021 around the world.
Antigua in southern Guatemala has a unique and vibrant take to this holiday rich in Guatemalan history. Streets in Antigua are covered in long, colorful carpets throughout Holy Week in preparation for its Good Friday procession. These colourful carpets are made from flowers, colored sawdust, fruits, vegetables, and sand to make intricate patterns and drawings. They are usually covered in scenes that are important to the artists who make them, the depictions range from religion, Mayan traditions, nature, Guatemalan history and everything in between.
SAN PEDRO CUTUD, THE PHILIPPINES
The Philippines bypasses the bunnies and hot cross buns, and instead rather adopted a more serous approach to Easter traditions. This is due to it being a predominantly Catholic country. According to DW Akademie, annually some people from San Pedro Cutud, northern Philippines, are nailed to crosses to honour and represent Jesus’ crucifixion on Good Friday. The Catholic Church has expressed great disatisfaction with these practices, though the annual tradition has become integral to the country and attracts thousands of tourists to the Phillipines annually.
Have an egg-cellent meal in this southern French town on Easter Monday. Every year Haux, France serves up a giant omelette in the town’s main square. The omelette is made of more than 15,000 eggs and feeds up to 1,000 people. According to old tales, when Napoleon and his army were traveling through the south of France, they stopped in a small town and indulged in omelettes. The tale goes that Napoleon enjoyed his so much that he ordered the townspeople to gather their eggs and make a giant omelet for his army the next day. After that the tradition was formed that was hard to beat.
The Vatican City commemorates the Way of the Cross on Good Friday, beginning at the Colosseum. Members of the procession light candles and make their way around the amphitheater and up to Palatine Hill, stopping 14 times along the way to represent the 15 Stations of the Cross. Afterwhich, Mass is celebrated on the evening of Holy Saturday, and on Easter Sunday, thousands of visitors congregate in St. Peter’s Square to await the Pope’s blessing from the church’s balcony, known as “Urbi et Orbi” (“To the City and to the World”).