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TES Youth Exchange 2005: Easter in Europe

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Easter in EuropeStory: Easter traditions in Estonia
Tuesday, May 03 @ 16:47:31 CDT by fire2005 (2008 reads)
Easter traditions are rather young in Estonia...

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Easter in EuropeStory: Easter customs in Italy
Sunday, May 01 @ 17:35:53 CDT by fire2005 (2301 reads)

Easter is one of the most important celebrations in Christian religion...

In Italy every region has got its own specific traditions and it would be almost impossible to list all of them.

One of the most characteristc ones takes place in Sulmona, Abruzzo, it's the representation of the Vergin running away (La madonna che scappa). The personification of the Vergin refuses to believe that her son resurrected so she runs away, out of the church, loses her black mantle showing a precious green dress with golden embroidery. On the Holy Friday, in the cities there is the procession of the dead Christ, which has medieval origins.

On Easter day, in Ginestra, La Processione dell'Addolorata ( Procession of the Suffering Mother) who goes around town to look for her dead son. During the moving procession, people imagine that she finally finds her son. The rite is linked to an ancient popular tradition and is followed by the city band.

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Easter in EuropeStory: Easter customs in Germany
Sunday, May 01 @ 17:15:36 CDT by fire2005 (2272 reads)

Easter customs in Germany
Easter in Germany is the time for colored eggs, chocolate bunnies, bonfires and spring cleaning. Look through the windows of a typical German household these days and you can’t help but notice how the rooms are decorated with clay bunnies, crocuses, yellow daffodils and branches hung with painted eggs.

Colored eggs everywhere…..

It is really impossible to imagine Easter without such an attribute as colored eggs. This is a tradition dating back to the 16th century to exchange colored eggs as Easter presents. Later, it became a custom for young people who were in love with each other, to give the decorated eggs to their sweethearts.

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Easter in EuropeStory: Easter Customs in Belgium
Sunday, May 01 @ 16:55:19 CDT by fire2005 (5659 reads)
Easter customs in Belgium

For most young people the period of Easter means. Two weeks of holidays that are very welcome in the middle of the semester. Some go on a vacation, take the opportunity to go skiing, or they work or study. The religious side is only far in the background. I don't know anyone who practices the Great Fast or goes to special ceremonies before Easter. The majority of the Belgians are catholic, and we use to learn about the religious traditions at school. On Ash Wednesday, for instance, all the toddlers went to church to confess, after which the priest gave us the black cross on our forehead. We were told that it would never disappear again if we would tell a lie. The teachers read the stories about Jesus' life from the children bible. During the breaks we got apples instead of the usual sweets; those were collected in a box on the teachers' desk. After confirmation though, catholic education ends. For me a religiously very calm period started.

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Easter in EuropeStory: Easter customs in Poland
Sunday, May 01 @ 13:32:07 CDT by fire2005 (2413 reads)

The preparation for the celebration in Poland starts one week before the Easter Sunday.

The preparation for the celebration in Poland starts one week before Easter Sunday. It is called the Palm Sunday and it is an introduction to the Great Week. On this day people go to church to bless palms, which are the symbol of Jesus’ arrival to Jerusalem, when its citizens were throwing palms to his donkey’s feet. During all the Great Week people send Easter cards to each other wishing a happy Easter time.

The first day of Easter is the Great Thursday. This day is celebrated mainly by priests, because on this day Christ established two important sacraments. On Thursday we bake some yeast and cheese cakes, sort of Easter cakes.

The Great Friday is the day of Jesus’ death and his funeral. Believers adorate and kiss the cross. In many cities in Poland people go out of the church to participate in the Passion. The bells don’t ring in any church, there is silence. On this day we don’t eat meat and we have only three meals during that day (light breakfast and dinner, full lunch). People who believe in God go to the church.

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Easter in EuropeStory: Easter in Romania
Sunday, May 01 @ 12:36:46 CDT by fire2005 (3471 reads)

Easter is a great religious celebration all over the Christian world because it commemorates the Crucifixion and the Resurrection of Jesus.


Easter is a great religious celebration all over the Christian world because it commemorates the Crucifixion and the Resurrection of Jesus. Historians say that in ancient times there were a pagan rituals which celebrate the coming of spring (the Vernal Equinox).

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Easter in EuropeStory: Easter customs in France
Sunday, May 01 @ 11:58:25 CDT by fire2005 (2269 reads)

In old times the tradition was that people offer eggs to each other on Easter, because since eating eggs was not allowed during Lent (the 40 days before Easter), many eggs were available at Easter...

Poor people used to offer simple eggs, but the nobility modified that tradition and had eggs decorated with precious material like gold. However, this tradition has disappeared, since almost nobody is observing Lent in France now. Only the holy Friday remains in a significant number of families, with no meat or eggs served, though it is also disappearing.

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