Saturday, March 4, 2017
A SPRING TRADITION IN GREECE
THE CELEBRATION OF EASTER
Easter is one of the greatest religious celebrations in Greece. It reaches its peak during The Holy Week and especially from Great Thursday to Easter Sunday.
On Great Thursday the housewives in Greece do not do any other housework and instead they take eggs which they paint red. The colour symbolizes Christ's blood which was shed to save people from their sins. On the same day they make a special kind of bread called tsoureki.
In the evening everybody goes to church where the 12 Gospels are heard which describe what happened to Jesus Christ the last days of his earthly life before he was crucified. After unmarried girls start decorating with flowers the Epitaphios which symbolises the coffin of Christ which on Great Friday is taken out from the church and carried around in the streets symbolising the carrying of Christ's Body to the cave in which he was placed after his
On Great Friday noone cooks. We just eat vegetables and no oil. It is the saddest day of the year. Even the sky is cloudy on this day mourning Jesus's death.
On Great Saturday at midnight we celebrate in churches the Resurrection of Christ. We all hold candles and sing 'Hristos Anesti' which means Christ has risen in the skies. Fireworks are thrown into the air to celebrate Christ's Resurrection. When we return home with the lit candles we make a cross at the main entrance door symbolising the cross on which Christ was crucified and then we light the small olive oil light in the house to keep the Holy Light of our candles which was brought from Jerusalem where Jesus had lived.
After that we eat mageiritsa (a soup with meat and vegetables).
Finally, on Easter Sunday we celebrate with traditional dances and songs and we eat roast lamb as shown in the picture.