Easter Traditions in Italy

If you happen to find yourself traveling through Italy during Holy Week get ready to celebrate Easter, Pasqua, like never before! The Procession begins on Palm Sunday and goes on through La Pasqutta, the Monday after Easter Sunday. Fortunately, each city and village ranging from northern Italy all the way down to the south in Sicily celebrate Easter traditions in their cultural way.

Photo of Christ on the cross in Badolato. Easter Traditions in Italy

I was fortunate to catch myself in a small medieval town called Badolato for their Easter Traditions, however, next year I hope to catch Via Crucis, or Stations of the Cross, in Rome near the Colosseum on Good Friday. Maybe see the Scoppio del Carro (Explosion of the Cart) in Florence? The celebrations are endless, but Badolato was the perfect introduction to my first Easter in Italy. The small village sits about thirty kilometers from the coast of the Ionian Sea in the province of Catanzaro. It is well-known for its perseverance in its ancient architectural structures and European retirees. 

Easter Processions

Easter traditions in Italy are the second most celebrated holiday next to Christmas. Personally, I was caught off guard by the intensity I felt in witnessing the procession in person. There are only so many books, movies, documentaries, and articles you can read/see until you experience the real thing. This was, without a doubt, the closest I felt connected in modern-day times to this historical event in history.

Imagine hearing the chains whipping against the cross and seeing Christ fall to his knees

It was that intense! There was no sugar coating what happened to Christ. We didn’t go to mass and then home to our family celebrations to hunt eggs hidden from the easter bunny. There is definitely a lot more to Easter traditions in Italy! Imagine onlookers filling the streets, Christ and his disciples walking barefoot, and songs of sorrow from those carrying the Madonna. Seeing in real-time what we’ve all learned about the crucifixion and resurrection of Christ.

Jesus Christ kneeling down during during Easter Procession in Badolato, Italy
It is said that those who carry the Madonna are the ones seeking the greatest forgiveness

Most importantly, no matter what religion or spiritual belief you practice it is almost a guarantee that you are going to deepen into your heart and feel the energy of Christ and the Virgin Mary.

For the first time in my life, I felt like I honored this holiday properly. It was an experience of a lifetime and above all, I hope it inspires you to witness it for yourself. My outlook on Easter traditions has expanded unexpectedly. With endless Easter traditions in Italy, I believe this beautiful country has it all.

After the procession ended we went home only to return on Easter Sunday for the Cunfrunta, known as ‘the meeting.’ This was the moment Christ and the Virgin Mary were reunited. A sight that brought joy to the streets of Italy with loud drums, cheers of celebration, and happiness all around.

Christ and the Virgin Mary on Easter Sunday for Easter Traditions in Italy
The angel said to the women, "Do not be afraid, for I know you are looking for Jesus who was crucified. He is not here; he has risen, just as he said. Come and see the place where he lay"
Matthew 28:5-6

If traveling to Italy for their Easter traditions isn’t accessible for you, I’ve uploaded a short video to give you the opportunty to witness from afar.

Interested in traveling to Badolato? Find more information on the village and all the events here

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