Easter is the celebration of the Christ’s resurrection. The resurrection took place on Sunday, which was from then on the “Lord’s Day”. Fasika (Easter) is celebrated after 55 days severe’ lent (fasting) ( Hudade or Aby Tsome). Orthodox Tewahido Christians do not eat meat and dairy products for the whole 55 days to commemorate the 40 days of fasting of Jesus experienced before crucifixion. Only vegetarian meals such as lentils, ground split peas, grains, fruits and varieties of vegetable stew accompanied by Injera and /or bread are eaten on these days. The first meal of the day is taken after 3 pm (9 o’clock in the afternoon Ethiopian time) during the fasting days, except Saturday and Sunday, where a meal is allowed after the morning service.
Holy week is the week proceeding Easter Sunday. Palm Sunday: This is the Sunday before Easter. It commemorates Christ’s entry into Jerusalem. On this date, early in the morning, the deacons walk around in every village of the town to deliver palm leaves to followers of the Orthodox Church to wear on their foreheads the whole day.
Thursday before Easter:
This day commemorates Christ’s last supper, and his washing of the disciples’ feel on that day. On this date, the head of the priests washes the people in the church. Good Friday: This is the Friday before Easter; the anniversary of the Christ’s crucifixion. On this day all Christians go to the nearby churches for a full day prayer.
Holy Saturday (Easter Eve):
People go to church with candles to celebrate. These candles are lit during a colorful Easter mass (service) which begins at about 6 pm (12 O’ clock in the evening Ethiopia time) and ends at about 2 am (8 O’clock after midnight Ethiopia time). Everyone goes home to break the fast with a meat of chicken or lamb, slaughtered the previous night after 6 pm, accompanied with Injera and traditional drinks, namely Tella or Tej.
On Easter Sunday there are re-unions of families and expressions of good wishes with exchange of gifts.