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by Elena Ruzic

It’s safe to say Eastern festivities for most people will look fairly different this year due to the ongoing new coronavirus pandemic in the world.

I would say I am lucky to spend Eastern Holidays in a circle of my closest family, however for us, this Easter has been quite different. No only from a religious perspective, but also socially and culturally.

Holy Week services and Passover traditions worldwide affected by COVID-19 had created a religious holiday like none seen in recent years. Eastern Sunday in a form of live streamed and televised masses is quite a new innovative way of celebration. Personally, this Easter completely differs from any before.

Social distancing, isolation and staying home this Easter means communities and families are apart. Thanks to technology, we are able to celebrate Easter with our loved ones via SM platforms and other communication apps. However, the whole spirit of this holiday is about family and friends gatherings, visits and spending time with your loved ones. For me, not even technology can substitute this. Holidays are a time to set aside technology and spend quality time.

Nonetheless, some customs and traditions not even COVID-19 can push out. In my region, in Medjimurje in Croatia, it is important to nurture traditions, customs and food related to Easter festivities. As every year, blessed breakfast on Eastern Sunday will include: cooked ham, french salad, sweet pretzel, horseradish, onion and eggs.

I would like to send a message to all of you out there: Times have changed and our life in the past two months and the rest of the year was and will not be the same. However, we have to keep up with positivity, sensibility, and responsibility. May this unite us all in overcoming COVID19 successfully. Wish you all Happy and blessed Easter.