Easter is an important holiday in Monaco as the church plays a key role in the culture. More than 90 percent of the population is Roman Catholic, the official state religion.
|2019||22 Apr||Mon||Easter Monday|
|2020||13 Apr||Mon||Easter Monday|
Easter, which is sometimes called Resurrection Day, celebrates the resurrection of Jesus Christ after his crucifixion. It is one of the most important days in Christianity as they believe Jesus freed his believers from the penalty of sin upon his death and resurrection.
Monaco celebrates Easter week, not just one day. The origins of Holy Week celebrations may trace back to the Crusades. Survivors of expeditions introduced Christians in the West to the rites of the East. There are accounts of processionals in Monaco on Good Friday starting in the 13th century.
In 1639, Prince Honore II established the Venerable Brotherhood of the Black Penitents of Mercy. The Brotherhood now organises a processional on the evening of Good Friday known as the Procession of the Dead Christ. The Brotherhood re-enacts the Stations of the Cross as the processional proceeds, reminding people that Jesus died on the cross for them. It is a sombre occasion and not celebratory as the procession travels through town.
Easter Sunday, however, is a celebratory occasion as it celebrates that Jesus rose from the dead. On this day, entire families gather in celebration on Easter Sunday. They often purchase special clothing and attend church services. A special Easter Mass is held at the Cathedral of Monaco. There is a parade in Monaco which is attended by the royal family as well.