With all of the meals, chocolate and happy Easter celebrations, the commercialisation of Easter means that it is easy to forget what it is all about. Easter is the most important festival on the Christian calendar, probably even more important than Christmas, as it remembers the Resurrection – Jesus rising from the dead. In this blog, I explore the traditions and values behind Easter, and the amazing ways that people celebrate Easter around the world.
The Meaning of Easter: Good Friday
According to Christian tradition, Jesus as the Son of God died on the Cross so that the sins of mankind could be forgiven. Good Friday was the day on which Jesus was crucified at Golgotha (the place of the skull). Christians believe that Jesus took on the burden of the sins of man at the point that he was crucified, and that through his love for mankind, God will forgive.
Christianity teaches that Jesus rose from the dead on the third day. The Bible tells the story of Mary Magdeline, a close friend of Jesus, going to anoint his body with spices. But when she got to the tomb, the stone had been rolled away and his body had gone. The resurrection was the ultimate miracle. Jesus had rose from the dead and ascended to heaven to be on the right hand side of God.
How is Easter Celebrated around the World?
In Europe, eggs are popular, signifying new life that follows the resurrection of Christ. In many parts of Europe, eggs are decorated beautifully and intricately. Small wooden crosses are often made and palm fronds to celebrate Palm Sunday.
In Africa and some parts of Asia, re-enactments of the stations of the cross are very popular. Easter processions are also popular in Europe, particularly in Spain and Italy. At Pocketdial UK, we were excited to find out the top 5 places to see Easter around the world.
Easter Around the World: Top 5 Places to visit at Easter
5. Alaska – In Alaska at Easter, you can see real multi-coloured chicks! Their eggs are injected with dye before they hatch. Don’t worry, the dye is harmless!
4. Spain – Visit the Spanish town of Malaga where you will see a Palm Sunday procession and a figure of Christ being paraded down the street on Holy Thursday.
3. Germany – Beautifully decorated Easter Eggs can be seen in Germany at Easter time. Volker Kraft decorates his tree in Saalfield with 10,000 decorated eggs, and has been doing so for 40 years!
2. Philippines – In the Philippines, it is traditional to re-enact the stations of the cross. Beware – some of these can be gruesomely realistic!
1. Italy – You just can’t beat Easter in Italy. Religious processions and festivals can be seen everywhere. Italians bake traditional Easter cake called Colomba di Pasqua – a cake shaped like a dove. Join the thousands who visit Vatican city to hear the Pope conduct Easter Mass on St. Peter’s square.
How do you celebrate Easter around the world?
What do you do to celebrate Easter? Have you celebrated Easter around the world and have any special experiences to share with us? Do leave your comments on our blog.
Remember to contact your friends and family to say happy Easter. You can make international calls from just 1p a minute with Pocketdial UK.