Easter Monday in Austria
Easter Monday, known as "Ostermontag" in German, is a public holiday in Austria, celebrated the day after Easter Sunday. This Christian holiday commemorates the resurrection of Jesus Christ and marks the end of the Holy Week, which includes Good Friday and Holy Saturday. Easter Monday typically falls between March 22nd and April 25th, with the date varying each year based on the lunar calendar.
The celebration of Easter Monday in Austria has its roots in Christian tradition, dating back to the early days of Christianity. It is believed to have been observed since the 2nd century, with the main focus on commemorating Jesus' resurrection. The holiday gained official recognition in Austria as a public holiday in the 20th century, following the Christianization of the country and the adoption of Christian holidays by the Austrian government.
National customs for Easter Monday in Austria
Easter Monday in Austria is a day for families to come together and celebrate the end of the Holy Week. Many Austrians attend church services on this day, where the story of Jesus' resurrection is retold, and hymns and prayers are shared. After the church services, families often gather for a festive meal, which usually includes traditional Austrian Easter dishes like roasted lamb, ham, and various seasonal vegetables.
Another popular Easter Monday tradition in Austria is the "Emmausgang," a walk or hike taken by families and friends to enjoy the spring weather and the beautiful countryside. This custom is said to symbolize the journey of Jesus' disciples to the village of Emmaus, where they recognized the risen Christ.
Local customs for Easter Monday in Austria
In addition to the national customs, there are some regional customs and traditions unique to certain regions in Austria. For example, in the province of Styria, it is customary for people to wear traditional folk costumes on Easter Monday and participate in festive processions. In the region of Burgenland, Easter Monday is known for the "Ratschen," a tradition in which children go from house to house making noise with wooden rattles to announce the resurrection of Jesus.
Another local custom is the "Eierpecken," an egg-tapping game played in many parts of Austria. In this game, participants take turns tapping the pointed ends of their hard-boiled Easter eggs against each other's eggs, trying to crack their opponent's egg without breaking their own. The winner is the one with the last intact egg.
Easter Monday in Austria is a day filled with various customs and traditions that bring together families and communities in celebration of the resurrection of Jesus Christ. From church services to festive meals, walks in the countryside, and local customs, Austrians embrace the spirit of this significant Christian holiday and its rich history.