The Resurrection of Jesus is one of the most important and beautiful Christian holidays of the Romania Easter tradition. It has the gift of bringing the family together and it has a lot of customs involving everyone.
The red painted eggs are one of the most spread tradition of the Romanian Easter. The eggs are always present on the table during the holiday. Kids can’t hardly wait to participate in the traditions regarding Easter. The traditions say that people who knock eggs in the first day of Easter will see each other after death. The first person who knocks the egg says ‘Christ has resurrected’ (in Romanian, ‘Cristos a inviat’), while the second one goes “True, he has resurrected” (in Romanian, ‘Adevarat a inviat’). The Easter eggs are dyed red to represent the blood of Christ shed at his crucifixion.
Over the years, the tradition changed and people changed, so now the eggs are dyed in other colors than red, like green, blue, yellow.
In the first day of Easter, the children wash their face with fresh water from the fountains, in which they put a red egg and green grass threads. It is been said that those who wash their face like that will be healthy and beautiful.
There are a lot of legends and myths about the traditional red eggs. The most popular one says that Mary, the mother of Jesus who came to grieve his crucified son, put the basket with eggs that she came with near the cross. The blood poured on the eggs and painted them red.
The ornament of the eggs is extremely varied. There are a few meanings of the symbols:
– the vertical line means life
– the horizontal line means death
– the double line means eternity
– the line with rectangular symbols means knowledge
– the curved line means water
– the spiral means time, eternity
– the double spiral means the bond between life and death.
The Holy Light is another important tradition from the Romanian Easter. In the Saturday of Light, the Romanians go to church to light a candle and bring light into their home. The light symbolizes the Resurrection and also the triumph of good over evil. Most of the families keep the rest of the candle after this day to light it up in case of a disaster or pain.
The Lamb is another important tradition in the Romanian Easter. Romanians eat lamb on the first day of Easter. The lamb symbolizes the Jesus Christ, who was sacrificed to save the humanity.
The Matzo, prepared once a year by mother and grandmothers, is a desert made from dough, cheese and raisins.
Important days in the Romanian Easter:
Initially, dedicated to the Roman goddess Flora, Palm Day is a feast celebrated a week before the Romanian Easter in the memory of Jesus’ entrance to Jerusalem. In this day, people sanctify willow, that symbolizes the palm fronds which commemorates that moment.
Maundy Thursday, the fifth day of the Holy Week, commemorates the moment when Jesus Christ washed the feet of the Apostles. The Washing of the Feet is a traditional custom often celebrated in many Christian churches.
Good Friday or Black Friday, the sixth day of the Holy Week, commemorates the crucifixion of Jesus and his death at Calvary. In this day of mourning Romanians abstain from all food and drink the entire day and in the evening, they eat Holy bread from the church.