Easter in Tisno
Easter is the most important holiday in Croatia and customs associated with the holiday are an important part of the Croatian tradition. Lent, 40 days of preparation for the feast begins on Ash Wednesday ( cro. Pepelnica ). Ash is a symbol of submission and it is time for sacrifice and renunciation. Lent ends today at the Holy Thursday.
The Palm Sunday ( cro. Cvjetnica ) is celebrated 7 days before Easter. What is characteristic for that day is procession and blessing of olive branches in Dalmatia. Blessed olive branches are brought home and are left as a sign of fidelity to Jesus Christ to the next year Palm Sunday. It is also a custom to wash your face in water which is soaked with spring flowers.
On Holy Thursday, in the evening is a mass that resembles a "last supper", to which the priest washes the feet of the Guardians of the Holy Sepulcher. The ornaments and jewelry are removed from the church, the icons are covered with a black veil, and the bell ringer does not ring church bells until Holy Saturday. In this way it shows compassion for Jesus passage that he has passed.
In Tisno, Holy Friday is celebrated with an evening Mass during which the faithful approach the Cross. The ceremony ends with a Procession that starts from church and then, following the cross, passes through the town. It is custom in Tisno, that every house has candles lit on the windows while at the same time bonfires along the road light up the way from cross and the faithful.
Holy Saturday is the day of pray and silence. It's the day when women in Croatia, especially Dalmatia, prepare Easter bread ( also known as „sirnica“ ) that is round in shape and almost sweet enough to be a cake. Also, on this special day, eggs are colored in different colors.
In the evening, during Mass, the Guardians of the Holy Sepulcher gather in a circle in front of the altar and preform a traditional scene. They fall on the ground and at the same time, lights and church bells are turned back on after 3 days of silence.
Easter is a celebration oft he resurrection of Jesus Christ and it is the most important Christian holiday. On Easter day, faithful attend a morning Mass, they bring food in their baskets for a priest to bless them and then they go home to enjoy Easter meal and celebrations.