Easter or Semana Santa in the Dominican Republic Palm Sunday and continues through the entire Holy Week, besides the entire week there are three important days which are Thursday, Friday (Good Friday) and Saturday (Holy Saturday) to every Christian in the Dominican Republic. Besides Christmas being one of the most important celebrations throughout the country is Easter one of the BIGGEST and in my opinion the most celebrated and this is because Easter is to remember the sacrifice Jesus Christ for all mankind his death on a cross and resurrection. While the resurrection is cause for celebration and joy, the week leading up to Easter Sunday is a more serious reminder of the suffering of Jesus’ last days on Earth before he died.
There are many activities in the Dominican Republic some of them not being religious at all for example loud music in small shops, drinking, go to the beach (boat trips) partying all through the night.
On these specific days you can find huge services you can attend Domingo de Ramos (Palm Sunday), Miercoles de Ceniza (Ash Wednesday), Jueves Santo (Holy Thursday, day of the Last Supper), Viernes Santo (Good Friday), Sabado Santo (Holy Saturday), Domingo de Resurrection o de Pascua (Resurrection or Easter Sunday).
- The Palm Sunday is held on March 28, 2021
- The Easter Monday is celebrated on March 29, 2021
- The Holy Tuesday is held on March 30, 2021
- The Ash Wednesday is celebrated on March 31, 2021
- The Holy Thursday is celebrated on April 1, 2021
- The Good Friday is celebrated on April 2, 2021
- The Holy Saturday is celebrated on April 3, 2021
- On Easter Sunday is celebrated on April 4, 2021
- The Easter Monday is celebrated on April 5th, 2021
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One classic food made in this week is Habichuela con Dulce translated: Beans with Sweet is made with red beans, cinnamon, nutmeg, coconut milk, evaporated milk, raisins, sugar and salt. The beans are boiled with cinnamon sticks and sweet cloves and then blended to the consistency of soup. The coconut milk and evaporated milk are added along with cooked sweet potato chunks. Cloves and ginger can also be added as flavorings. Recipe here!
Some favorites are rice with pigeon peas in the form of stew, or moro (a combination of rice with beans, pigeon peas, beans), locrio (joint cooking of rice with meat, herring, sardine or cod) are tasted.
Why does the date change every year?
Holy Week is celebrated on the Sunday following the first full moon of the spring equinox , which usually falls between March 20 and April 25.
At the Council of Nicaea (year 325) it was promulgated that Christian Easter (the Resurrection of Christ) would be celebrated “on the first Sunday after the first full moon on or after the vernal equinox.” For this reason, astronomically, Easter can never fall before March 22 or after April 25. Since Easter is a very important celebration for Christians because it is the feast for the Resurrection of Jesus, it led them to believe that it could not be carried out without some spiritual preparation. With this it was thought that all Christians should condition their souls for a few days of fasting, penance and prayer. This would be what would later be called Lent and ended up establishing the way in which we currently celebrate Holy Week.
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I explained in a more shorter version of Easter in the Dominican Republic and what they do in the Holy Week (Semana Santa). This years Semana Santa is a little different from the rest of the years but many of us still can manage to celebrate it and spend it in family companion.
What are some of the traditions you and your family have? Wishing everyone a safe and Happy Easter!