Poland is a very Catholic country. More than 90% of society strongly admits of being a part of Roman Catholic Church which plays a significant role in people`s life. Christmas time is important to Catolics when they celebrate the birth of Jesus however the significance of Easter is even greater. It`s the time for a deeper reflection about our life and what`s the most important- time for the family when everyone unites together having laughs and enjoying their time. Easter bunnies, chocolate eggs are only addition however Easter is celebrated without all the craziness and comercial atmosphere of buying gifts and spending fortune as it is for Christmas.
Easter time is a very happy time. Despite a sad commemoration of Jesus` crucifixion and dead it is a spring time as well. Everything wakes up and comes to life as to be happy for Christ resurrection.
PALM SUNDAY 🌾🌾🌾
Everything starts week before when on Palm Sunday people commemorate Jesus` entry to Jerusalem. That day beautiful and colourful palms are brought to the church where on a special mass the priest blesses them as a symbol of peace and victory.
Palm Sunday started to be an inspiration for arts and crafts where people can take part in a special `palm competition`. The interpretation is very flexible and palms can be made of everything without any restriction of size, colour and material used for making it. Having a great freedom of creating people`s ideas can really suprise a lot. The higest palm ever made was 39 meters and 40 centimeters long! The palm is enormous and the size pretty shocking which I could compare to the statue of Christ in Rio de Janeiro ( ~38 meters).
Easter time is also the time for cleaning 🙂 Spring is a great season for refreshing dusty corners in our houses which helps people clean their mind and get ready for Easter. Everyone is dusting, hoovering, wiping and getting involved in a family clean-up.
In many cities around Poland people can attend a special procession which leads through the streets remembering Jesus` Way of the Cross. The date varies depending on the city where the event takes place. It can be organised during a day time or after the dusk when people bring candles and gather together to contemplate and sing ponderous hymns.
HOLY THURSDAY 🥖🍷
That day reminds Catholics about Jesus` last supper when the sacrament of Holy Communion was established. It is also the Day of Priesthood when people are thanksful for the religious service given by the priests as a continuation of Jesus` lessons. People go to the church and attend Thursday mass with the special ceremony which takes place only once a year. At the end of the mass priest removes the hosts from the main place and covers all the crosses in the church. From that moment on there is no music and everyone in silence leaves the church ready for Good Friday.
GOOD FRIDAY ✝🛐
It`s the saddest day of Easter preparation when people commemorate Jesus` crucifixion and his death. It is the second day of Triduum when people gather in the church again to mourn Christ`s death. Good Friday is a day of fast. Catholics can`t eat any kind of meat and the meal must be reduced to only one full and two small snacks. During the mass in a special way the fragment about cricifixion is read. After that people have a chance to place a kiss on the cross showing the respect and sadness over Christ`s death. There is no music at all that day which symbolises mourning and ponderous atmosphere. At the end priest moves the host to the place in the church which is prepared as Jesus` tomb. According to the Bible his body stayed there for 3 days until he rose from the death.
HOLY SATURDAY 🐣⛪
That day is probably the best and most fun day for children. People decorate their baskets placing there different kind of food and bringing it to the church for blessing. Children from early morning decorate Easter eggs and get involved in Easter decoration and preparation.
After the food is blessed meat fasting is removed and it is the time for baking, cooking and preparing everything for the Easter Sunday. At 9pm people go to the church and a very special mass takes place. The mass lasts 3 hrs and due to its duration most of the people choose the service on the next day.
EASTER SUNDAY 💒🥚👨👨👧👧
In many places around Poland early mass takes place and people gather in church at 6am. That time is very special as people celebrate Jesus` resurrection in happiness and joy. After the mass it is the time for family breakfast where everyone shares laughs and unites together in the atmosphere of blessing. Very important part of Easter breakfast is the time when family members share Easter eggs wishing each other good luck and prosperity. It is a symbol of peace as the wafer on Christmas Eve.
EASTER MONDAY 💦💦💦
The celebration continues within family members. Everyone is eating, chatting and enjoying joyful time. Easter Monday is a specific day when people squirt water on each other having laughs and making jokes. Time ago there was a tradition when boys were throwing buckets full of water on girls who they liked. Girls had to be wet otherwise it meant a bad lack in the future marriage or possibilty of being an old maid. Nowadays the tradition is different and it`s all about fun. Easter Monday is the only day in a year which gives the chance to have fun wetting each other without any consequences 🙂
The best equipment for squirting water ^^ ⬆⬆⬆
WHAT NEEDS TO BE ON POLISH TABLE? 🇵🇱🥖🥚🍲🧀
ŻUREK (sour rye soup) typical Easter soup.
Normally people don`t eat just a plain soup. In most of the cases żurek is served with eggs, horseradish, ham and sausages. Basically all the things you can find on the table.
WHITE SAUSAGES typical Easter sausage normally eaten in Żurek or separately fried on the side.
EGGS symbol of life and victory over the death.
Depending on the region eggs served for Easter are different: plain, stuffed, with mayo or as an ingredient of salads.
BREAD is a main product and food around the world which is the symbol of prosperity and protects people from the hunger.
SALT- important mineral which symbolises purification and protects people from the badness.
MEAT-another symbol of prosperity and health.
In the past meat was the product for rich and wealthy people that`s why it is considered as the blessing these days.
HORSERADISH-very strong and `spicy` vegetable being a symbol of strength and vigour.
Another popular product which normally appears on the Easter table are grated beetroots mixed with horseradish. It can be addition to any meat or salad however not everyone likes its very strong flavour.
CAKES-normally home made symbolise skills and abilities of women in the house. Again depending on the region in Poland types of cakes vary however the 3 most popular ones are BABKA,MAZUREK and MAKOWIEC. Each family continues the tradition in its own way that`s why cakes could be really different.
Obviously it`s not the rule that each Polish table has exactly same things on it. People prepare any kind of meals depending on the tradition the family continues.
I hope you liked my Catholic version of Easter celebration which shows the events from a different perspective. Each country has its own tradition and that was a typical Polish Easter. What about your country? How do you celebrate Easter these days?
Happy Easter my readers! Thank you for all your support! 🐣🌺😍