Easter is a very important event among the Christians, especially in Armenia. It is the symbol of Christ’s resurrection from death. Every year this holiday is in different days in spring. It starts at 17:00 on Saturday till the end of the following Sunday.
Prior to Easter
The strict Christians start a Lent before the Easter. In the Armenian Church Lent is the 40 days leading up to Easter Sunday, also known as Palm Sunday. People go to churches, where the Curtains go down to hide the altars, in a sign of people’s self-sacrifice. If a person decided to start Lent he must give up food from animals’ origin (such as meat, milk, egg etc.). Basically, during this period they become vegans. But this is not all about the food. If you have chosen to sacrifice yourself you must also give up your daily enjoys, such as going to parties. Nevertheless, this is also not the all. You must live your days as an extremely honest person: not cheating, not insulting someone, not swearing etc. If you do not follow these rules, your Lent becomes ridiculous.
Easter in the Church
In the evening of Easter, Sunday people visit Churches. All the churches of Armenia are fulfilled with huge crowds. People go and pick up a fire with candles and take it to home in a symbol of bringing Easter to their houses. When people hear the sound of the bells the actual holiday begins. You can notice happy faces everywhere. What is the most beautiful – the people walking along the streets with the candles in their hands. If you observe from a side it may also excite you. In this way, Armenians prove that they are loyal Christians and they are the nation who adopted Christianity the first.
The Celebration of Easter
Armenians prefer to spend this holiday with their families or in surrounding of their very close people and relatives. This is the time when they must be with the people whom they really love. Armenians set a table with delicious meals. All the people prepare the same food and each food has its meaning. With Easter everything symbolizes something. The basic meals of the Easter are rice pilaf, the cooked fish, some greens, lavash, special cakes and all the people drink wine, and of course the colorful eggs. People “fight” with the eggs and who wins takes the egg of the “loser.” The rice pilaf with raisins is the symbol of people and their sin. The cake with white frosting is the symbol of purity. The vine is the symbol of Christ’s blood which was sacrificed to save the people. Every housewife in Armenia sets a unique and very beautiful table which makes their holiday more enjoyable.
As a reminder, this year the Easter will start on the April 15.