Bulgaria’s Orthodox Christians Celebrate Easter

Society | April 15, 2012, Sunday // 10:01|  views

The Holy Fire descended upon Jerusalem on Great Saturday. Photo by Reuters/DarikNews.bg

Thousands of Orthodox Christian worshipers in Bulgaria clutching candles crowded into churches Saturday night to hear the Holy Mass that celebrates Easter, the day when Jesus resurrected from the dead.

At midnight sharp, when the mass was over, as is the ritual, the believers were asked to go around the church three times, with their candles burning. There is a belief that if you have been a good Christian, your candle will not go out no matter how strong the wind might be, because you have no sins.

After all church ceremonies are over people gather around, exchange their colored eggs and carry out the ritual of cracking them.The eggs are cracked after the midnight service and during the next days. One egg is cracked on the wall of the church (and this is the first egg eaten after the long Great Fast). Each person selects his/her egg. The people take turns tapping their egg against the eggs of others, and the person who ends up with the last unbroken egg is believed to have a year of good luck.

On Easter people great each other with "Christ Is Risen" while the reply is: "He Is Indeed Risen."

On Sunday, all eparchies in Bulgaria serve the so-called "Second Resurrection" mass. The mass at the Sofia Sveta Nedeliya church is expected to be led, once again, by Patriarch Maxim. It will begin at 11:00 am.

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Tags: Easter, Palm, Lent, Jesus Christ, eggs, Resurrection Day, Orthodox, Christians, Holy Mass, Holy Week, Patriach Maxim.


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