Easter is the most important Orthodox religious festival of the year. The Pascale mass starts at midnight and finishes in the early morning.  Worshipers go to the church bringing candles and a basket, which is especially braided for this festival, and which is filled with traditional “pasca”, bacon and smoked sausage, fresh garlic and onion, painted eggs  salt, cheese,  horseradish, cakes, and flowers… all covered with a traditional embroidered or woven mat . All of the rites of this "Pacques" ceremony are prescribed according to ancestral tradition.  In the past, the Resurrection of Christ was announced by angels  accompanied by gun shots, but today young people use the firecrakers which do enough noise  

In the early morning at the end of the Mass, people leave their filled-baskets in the courtyard of the church, arranging them in a ring, and they wait for the priest come and bless their contents.




Painted eggs

Small "pasca"

The Pascal rites continue at the cemeteries the next day, Easter Monday, when families place offerings on the graves of their loved ones.   These offerings are blessed by the priest and offered “for the souls of the departed”.    People also pour a glass of alcohol on the grave so that the departed ones are not thirsty in the other world.





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