Monday, April 17, 2006

Easter in Poland

It's that time of year again. The festival of Easter in Poland is easily as important, if not more important than that of Christmas. This is probably because of the resurrection aspect of Jesus' death. With a 98% Catholic population Poland's GDP of sins is one of the highest in the world. As such Jesus' salvation offers vast promise to the almost all the nation.

And thus Easter in Poland (note the symmetry of the words 'Easter' and 'Poland') is A Big Deal. And for outsiders the spiritual frenzy can prove to be a tiny bit overwhelming.

We don't do chocolate eggs you see...

Rather people send each other smses with messages like "Jesus is risen! Alleluia! Alleluia!". Or cry as TVP1 broadcasts the recent 'The Passion of the Christ' under some kind of special license similar to the global broadcast of 'Fahrenheit 9/11' in the days prior to the last US presidential election. (Can anyone explain to me how exactly these 'event' deals work?) Sadly I missed seeing 'Pasja' safely for free on TV...

Polish churches become ants nests of activity with Sunday being taken up with a day-long ceremony that seems closely reminiscent of the reproductive ritual of the humble fish. Females (for Polish males can't handle baskets unless they're dads) carry baskets of eggs into a church. The eggs are deposited on a table in front of a male priest (no female priests, this is Poland remember). One by one the females withdraw and wait. The priest waits for the right volume of eggs to be laid on the table. He must choose this moment wisely for he will have to repeat this ritual for most of the day. Suddenly, he ventures forward and sprays the eggs with as much of his Holy water as he judges he can spare. Afterwards the females quickly return to pick up their respective eggs - which are now ready be taken home and ingested. Alleluia!

I had a half. As a bird I've got to be careful with other people's eggs these days...

All of this is followed by 'Wet Monday' when males accost females and spray them with scent (perfume) or water sometimes by the bucketful. This is act is said to do with sin removal though I'm rather not convinced.


Blogger Becca said...

Oh I saw Pasja. Wish I hadn't though. I got the blood and gore and lost most of the text, what with it being in arameic with polish subtitles and all...

18/4/06 7:52 am  
Blogger Warsaw Crow said...

Polish TV subtitled something? No one man dubbing? That's the second time I've ever heard of such a thing happening! It had to have been in the contract.

Personally I want to see it for the Caravaggio-styled lighting (especially on Monica Bellucci) and the CGI God's tear that's said to fall from the sky. It was also filmed in a part of Italy close to my heart.


18/4/06 8:38 am  

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