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    Easter Around the World

    Easter in Ukraine

    Ukrainians decorate eggs in a special way called Pysanky. They make beautiful designs with beeswax on eggs. The beeswax is melted and a special stylus or pen is dipped in the wax. A wax design is painted onto the egg with the stylus. Then the egg is dipped in the dye. The dyed egg is carefully held over a candle flame and the wax melted off. Now, there is a beautiful white pattern on the dyed egg.

    The egg designs are very delicate and complicated. The patterns for the designs are passed down from parents to children over the years.

    During the pre-Easter period, the spring cleaning is done. The houses are plastered and whitewashed; everything is taken out of the house and washed or wiped; and all the rubbish is taken and burned outside the village.

    Palm Sunday is called Willow Sunday, and willow boughs are blessed in the church.

    Holy Week is called white or pure week. People try to finish all their work in the fields before Thursday, because from then on work is forbidden. On the evening of Holy Thursday, a special Passion service is held at the church, and people leave with lighted candles. They try to get home without letting the candle go out. This candle is kept until next year.

    On Good Friday nobody does any work. Until Easter Sunday the ringing of the church bells is replaced by the beating of wooden clappers or the striking of a mallet on a board.

    On Easter Day known as the Great Day, the church bells are rung at short intervals all day to remind people that this is the greatest feast of the year.

    Easter Sunday begins with a church service where the Easter cakes and Easter eggs are blessed. Butter, lard, cheese, roast suckling pigs, sausage, smoked meat, and little napkins with poppy seeds, millet, salt, pepper and horseradish wrapped in them are also blessed. After the service, people exchange Easter greetings and eggs, and then they hurry home with their "holy food".

Products Available from Amazon for Easter in Ukraine

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