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Easter in Crete

Easter mass in Adele and Pikris, Crete

Good Friday is the day that Jesus is caught and put on the cross. It is a sad day and the church service is from 21:00 to 23:00 in the evening. Again, people are gathering in and outside of the church. After the sermon the crowd follows the casket of Jesus. The casket, decorated with flowers and candles is carried in procession though the village. We walk through the village and on the side of the street there are women splashing perfume on the passer-by’s. I have no idea why, but its what they do.

Christ has risen and the fast is broken

Holy Saturday evening the church is packed with people all carrying unlit long candles. At the end of the sermon the priest brings fort the flame from Jerusalem. Everybody gathers to get their candle lit from the holy flame. People light their candles from each other and this flame is taken home and kept in oil lamps for the next year.

As soon as the church bells sound, the fireworks and shooting of guns into the air starts. Everybody greets each other with the words “Christ has risen”, in Greek its “Kristos Anesti”.
This marks the end of the fast and people go home to eat the traditional Easter soup “Magiritza”, play with the red coloured Easter eggs and eat other delicious dishes.

Sunday roast lamb

Sunday the barbecues are lit all over the island, the air is full of the smell of barbecued lamb. Everone you meet has a smile on their face, again the greeting “Kristos Anesti” and “Kronia Polla” (many years to you) is exchanged. If you happen to dump in on someone with the barbecue going, you will most likely be invited to join them for the meal. The tables are laid with all sorts of specialities, salads, breads and of course the roasted lamb, juicy and tender and tasting heavenly.

Easter week in 2015