CEREMONIES have been taking place across the world to mark the most important festival in the Christian calendar Easter.

Tens of thousands of worshippers yesterday gathered in St Peter’s square to hear Pope Francis lead Easter Sunday Mass.

Jesus was resurrected on Easter Sunday, the Bible says, days after dying on the cross on Good Friday.

It is traditional for many to attend services on Saturday evening as well as on Sunday.


What you need to know about Easter:


  • Catholics do not eat meat on Good Friday but can eat fish instead and it is also customary to eat warm hot cross buns. They normally fast on this day unless they have health issues or are below the prescribed age.


  • Protestants, on the other hand, do not have food restrictions on Good Friday but many follow the ‘no meat’ rule like the Catholics.


  • Germany: In Germany, people participate in the “Karfreitag,” which is a solemn church service. People fast on this day, and some communities hold silent processions.


  • India: Some areas hold three-hour long special services at noon, the time when Jesus is said to have been crucified. The lights are dimmed and eventually extinguished with followers wearing black clothes and covering all religious pictures, crosses and icons in the churches and their homes to mourn the absence of God and the associated sadness. A loud noise is created to depict the earthquake that struck during Jesus’ dying hour. Passages from the Gospel about the Seven Last Words of Jesus are read.

Catholics relive the fourteen stations —places in and around the church that mark Jesus’ final journey. The Holy Communion is organised at several places. A bitter drink is prepared from mostly leaves and vinegar, which is tasted by all after the service.


  • Italy: In Italy, people participate in the “Via Crucis” procession, which is a reenactment of the events leading up to the crucifixion. In some parts of Italy, people perform the “Miserere,” which is a solemn song sung in the churches.


  • Mexico: In Mexico, people commemorate Good Friday by enacting the “Via Crucis,” or the Way of the Cross. The streets are filled with processions, and people carry a statue of Jesus on the cross. In some parts of Mexico, people participate in a reenactment of the crucifixion.


  • Philippines: In the Philippines, the Good Friday procession is a significant event. People participate in processions called “Senakulo,” which is a reenactment of the Passion of Christ. The procession includes floats, statues, and people dressed as Roman soldiers and Biblical figures.


  • Spain: In Spain, people participate in the “Semana Santa,” which is a week-long celebration leading up to Easter. On Good Friday, people participate in processions called “La Madrugada,” which starts at midnight and continues until early morning. The procession includes people carrying statues of the Virgin Mary and Jesus. – BBC

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