Easter customs: Orthodox and Catholic

Author : Polina Davydova

Source : 112 Ukraine

Easter symbolizes one event for all Christians, but is celebrated among Christian denominations differently
15:54, 28 April 2019

Orthodox Christians in Ukraine and all over the world celebrate Easter this Sunday, April 28. For all Christians of the world, this holiday symbolizes one event - the resurrection of Jesus Christ, but is celebrated among Christian denominations differently.

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  • The celebration of the Orthodox Easter is always held together or later than Catholic Easter celebration, never before. Orthodox Church continues to follow the Julian calendar when calculating the date of Easter. The rest of Christianity uses the Gregorian calendar. And also the Orthodox Church continues to adhere to the rule that requires that Easter must take place after the Jewish Passover in order to maintain the Biblical sequence of Christ’s Passion.


  • It is customary among Orthodox Christians to greet one another during Easter season with the Paschal greeting. The salutation begins with the phrase, "Christ is Risen!" The response is "Truly, He is Risen!". Catholics often wish each other Happy Easter, God’s blessings and other warm wishes.

  • Both Orthodox and Catholics color and decorate eggs for Easter. According to the legend, this custom traced back to the ancient Rome, when Mary Magdalene brought an egg as a gift to Emperor Tiberius as a symbol of the Resurrection of Christ. The emperor did not believe Mary - said that the dead are not raised, the egg does not become white in red. And the egg at the same moment became red. Therefore, originally painted Easter eggs were red.


  • Also, there is a tradition of Orthodox Christians to "clink" Easter eggs. The winner of such competition is the one whose egg after the collision will remain intact.

  • Catholics instead have an “egg hunt” game – when parents hide the eggs, usually outdoor, for children to find. And also there is the “egg roll’. In the United States, the Easter Egg Roll is an annual event, and is held on the White House South Lawn each Easter Monday for children and their parents.

  • Both Orthodox and Catholics have traditional Easter bread cakes, though these cakes look different. Catholic Lamb cake symbolizes Christ, the Lamb of God. Orthodox cake commemorates the Last Supper, when Christ shared bread with his disciples, they prepared in absolute silence a brioche or egg bread called koulitch.


  • Catholic Easter tradition, except for cakes and eggs has one more symbol - the Easter Bunny. Edible Easter Bunnies are baked from dough, made from chocolate, marmalade, orothersweets. Very often an Easter egg is hidden in such an edible baked bunny. There are souvenir Easter Bunnies made from clay, plastic, fabric, wood and so on.

Related: Easter Festival in Kyiv

Related: Petro Poroshenko congratulated Ukrainians on Easter

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