Easter Traditions in Sicily
Easter or in italian Pasqua, is the second most important holiday in Italy after Christmas. This holiday covers a long weekend in Italy, with the additional Italian observance of Pasquetta (Easter Monday or Pasquetta in Italian) which according to tradition, you are free to celebrate as you wish!
Traditional Easter foods across Italy may include lamb or goat, artichokes, and special Easter bread that vary from region to region. A typical sweet of easter in Sicily is the Colomba, so called for its shape that recalls a dove.
If you’re one of those people who loves Easter eggs, don’t worry – chocolate eggs are also part of the Italian Easter tradition and they often come with a surprise in the middle.
Considering the Easter events in Sicily, Enna, for example, has a large procession on Good Friday, with more than 2,000 friars dressed in ancient costumes walking through the streets of the city. Trapani is also a good place to see processions, held several days during the Holy Week. Their Good Friday procession, Misteri di Trapani, is 24 hours long. These processions are very elaborate and quite dramatic.
There are also Easter events in Barcellona P.G.
For example, on the day of Good Friday, the Procession of Varette of Barcellona and Pozzo di Gotto takes place. The Procession will start at around six o’clock p.m. from two different points of the city (Point A: via Giuseppe Garibaldi – Point B: San Giovanni) and after having followed their itinerary they will meet on the Longano Bridge at around 21:00.
On the 1st June 1836 the King Ferdinand II of Bourbon decided that the new municipality, formed by the fusion of two municipalities would have led to the current name Barcellona Pozzo di Gotto.
Barcelona and Pozzo di Gotto has two “Arcipreture” and offers on the occasion of the Good Friday, two separate processions, each consisting of thirteen Varette decorated with flowers, traditionally distinct, reproducing the Mystery of the Cross.
The procession of Pozzo di Gotto with the oldest Varette dating back to 1800 starts from Santa Maria Assunta Church, and the other from Barcellona starting from San Giovanni Church, dating back to the early ‘900. They unfold in a wealth of flowers and lights, followed by groups of men singing the Vexilla, an ancient pattern, built on the lines of the Latin poet Venantius Fortunatus (530-601) Vexilla Regis.
Each Varetta represents a single event, symbolizing the place and the scenario of the episode that occurred followed by the pilgrimage.
It has a solemn moment when the two processions meet on the bridge Longano of Barcellona P.G. according to the ancient tradition.
We strongly suggest that you take part in the Procession as it’s a cultural tradition handed down for years in Barcellona P.G.
Easter Monday or Pasquetta is a free day – usually, people are out, spending time with their friends and families. It is very popular to have a picnic! Don’t expect shops or restaurants to be open, because everybody wants to celebrate!