Easter celebrations in Madeira

Being Easter a religious holiday it is celebrated within families and churches but for tourism there is not much attraction besides the holiday itself… As Madeira is mostly catholic, at Funchal Cathedral and most other churches around Madeira there is the ritual of Pascha (Páscoa in Portuguese) celebrations, starting on Holy Thursday with the Lord’s Last Supper Mass in the afternoon. On the evening of Good Friday, a holiday in Portugal, there is a Liturgy about Jesus Christ’s Passion and after it a procession about His crucifixion and death. On Holy Saturday a Easter Vigil or Paschal Vigil is held after sunset. On Easter Sunday a procession of the Resurrection of Jesus precedes the Solemnity of the Resurrection of the Lord’s Mass.

Putting aside the theological significance of Easter, in Madeira the tradition is to gather the family for a Easter Sunday lunch where lamb is the main dish and which is preceded or followed by an Easter eggs hunt for the children and some exchange of chocolates and sweets between the adults.