Πασχαλιά (Paschalia) is the Greek name for lilac: the Paschal flower. It always blooms for Easter.
For Greeks, Easter is a more important holiday than Christmas: a time for fasting and feasting. A celebration of spring. Even people who are not religious will go to church at least on Good Friday and then Saturday night for the Resurrection, in order to join in the festivities. Sunday is spent with family and friends, preferably in the countryside, which is covered in wild flowers, with the aroma of roasting lamb wafting about in the breeze.
For those who have not been following this blog for long, last year I wrote a post on Greek Easter traditions which you can read here.
The date upon which Easter falls is calculated according to the moon and the vernal equinox and Greek Easter this year coincides with the other Christian churches – it doesn’t always, since the calculations are based on different calendars (Julian versus Gregorian). So, for all those who celebrate this holiday, whatever their customs and traditions, I wish you a very joyful and happy time!
I couldn’t resist making a quick sketch of the lilac bush in our garden.