About Vlkolínec

Easter in Vlkolínec used to be filled with traditions.

Along with Christmas, Easter belongs among the most important Christian holidays. It reminds us of the crucifixion and the subsequent resurrection of Jesus Christ. This holiday does not have a fixed date, it falls in the month of March or April. It is celebrated after the first full moon after spring equinox. Because of that, there can be a difference in the month in the individual years.

The last but one Sunday before Easter is called Passion Sunday. It commemorates the day on which the Jewish Council decided on the death of Jesus. On this day, the believers in Vlkolínec covered up all the crosses with a purple cloth and they went to church dressed in dark clothes, and women were wearing black scarves on their heads.

The last Sunday before Easter is called Palm Sunday. It commemorates the solemn arrival of Jesus to Jerusalem. Jesus was welcomed by people with palm branches and flowers. On this day, women in Vlkolínec brought pussy willow branches to church, which had already bloomed on the trees. In church, people started singing the Passion.

Right before Easter, there is Maundy Thursday. This day commemorates the Last Supper of Jesus with his disciples. At noon on this day, boys used to make noise with their rattles to remind people to pray.

Good Friday reminds us of the crucifixion and the death of Jesus on the cross. On this day, most people in Vlkolínec walked to the church in Ružomberok. Women did not forget to decorate the Holy Sepulchre in the church in Vlkolínec with flowers, and in the evening, it was guarded by a guard of honour composed of the local firemen dressed in uniforms.

Holy Saturday is the end of a long, forty-day fasting period. On this day, the end of the fast was announced in Vlkolínec at noon by ringing of the bell in the church as well as in the belfry. On this day, people were cleaning and sweeping everywhere, because everything had to be clean on Holy Saturday. In the evening, people met at the church, which was lit up with candles. After the mass, everyone went home and, in every house, they lit up a candle in the window facing the street. Then they lit up another candle on the table, they prayed, and they ate meat of a roasted baby lamb with bread stuffing and smoked sausages.

Easter Sunday is the most important Christian holiday and it reminds us of the resurrection of Jesus. On this day, everyone in Vlkolínec put on the most formal and beautiful clothes they had. After lunch, young women hid and young men went searching for them. If a woman was found, they poured water on her.

On Easter Monday, young men went “watering” the women again. They were generous with the water, women usually got a full bucket of the water from the creek. After the “watering” in each house, the men were offered distilled spirit and they were also given some sort of reward. Younger boys went “watering” with a perfume.