The Christian festival of Easter is celebrated to mark the resurrection of Jesus Christ on the third day after he was crucified. This festival is celebrated in different ways around the world. Pondicherry, too, comes alive during Easter for which the celebration begins a week before with Palm Sunday. Two days before Easter, Good Friday is observed. This is a solemn occasion marked by the reading of passages from the Bible and prayers in the church and individual fasting. On Easter in Pondicherry, a large crowd gathers at the Immaculate Conception Church for taking out a procession called “Way of the Cross”.
At exactly 12:00 AM, in all the churches of Pondicherry, lights are shut down and candles are lit. These symbolize the resurrection of Jesus Christ. During the day, worshippers visit the church for saying their prayers and performing certain rituals associated with Easter. In the evening, bakeries in Pondicherry are filled with people looking to buy hot cross buns and Easter eggs. Other items which are very popular during this occasion are marzipan bunnies, marshmallows, French meringue and eggs made of chocolate and white cream. These mouth watering snacks are relished by one and all. During the occasion of Easter in Pondicherry, people also exchange gifts like colourful lanterns with one another.
Easter is celebrated on the first Sunday after the full moon following the spring equinox. Easter is always celebrated on a Sunday in the month of March or April.
Special Highlights/Rituals of the Festival
- Easter, which is celebrated after Good Friday, is marked by processions and prayers inside the church.
- This festival is an occasion for vigorous celebrations and exchanging gifts with one another.
- Bakeries in Pondicherry are often crowded during Easter, as people look to buy various snacks for themselves and their families.
- A large crowd gathers at the Immaculate Conception Church for taking out a procession called “Way of the Cross”.