Easter is the biggest holiday in Christian calendar. And one of the most important among all holidays in Poland. Many people are preparing the whole year for this special Sunday. How much do you know about this spring fete? This year, 15.04 in Saturday, people will take their Easter baskets to the church. What do they put inside and why? Let’s check polish traditions connected with Easter. Traditionally Poles are blessing eggs, bread, salt, horseradish and ham. Nowadays, to the delight of children, they also buy chocolate figures. Those candies are depicting lamb, chick, rabbit and pig. Those items have symbolic meaning:
eggs – indicates new life and Christ’s Resurrection from the tomb
bread – symbol of the body of the Christ, who is the Bread of Life
lamb – represents Christ
salt – represents purification, Symbol of prosperity and justice
horseradish – symbol of the bitter sacrifice of Christ
ham – brings health, fertility and abundance
It’s a time to gather with family and prepare for this holiday. Which Easter traditions in Poland are cultivated?
One week before Easter- blessing palms ( in Palm Sunday). Some people make their own ,,palms”, others are buying ready made. It’s actually bunch of plants and flowers. Some churches are organizing contests for the longest palm. Later it’s burned and the ash is used in Ash Wednesday. It reminds about the times, when Jesus entered Jerusalem and people greeted him with palms.
A few days before Easter Sunday – coloring eggs. There are few traditional ways of doing it. Some of them really time- consuming!
Another tradition is big cleaning. It shows that big event is coming. And the house have to be ready to celebrate. Traditionally it’s also symbol of swiping away winter, and with it all evil and disease.
Wet Monday is a tradition of pouring water on each other. Traditionally boys were chasing girls, and the more wet the girl was, the more attractive she was considered.
To sum up: there are many other polish traditions in the country, depending on the region. Those above are just examples of the most popular ones. They are passed from generation to generation. It’s a time to spend time with family, prepare feast, prey. Fortunately, those traditions don’t disappear. It becomes more and more popular to organize… Easter workshops! Especially in the cities, where families are not living together.
Usually grannies are showing how to make Easter eggs, and also… How to bedeck the basket, embroider napkin or bake shortcrust tart. It’s a nice initiative to connect generations. Easter is a peaceful time when you respite from work. What is more, you welcome the Spring! Remember that public transport in Krakow will not run regularly. Also, like during all big holidays in Poland, shops won’t be open! Since you already know some things about Easter… Will you come to Poland to celebrate?