Easter in Spain
On Ash Wednesday, people have a cross made of ash put on their foreheads. This is a way of saying sorry to God.
On Palm Sunday, most people go to mass in the morning. Children bring palm leaves and branches to be blessed by the priest. Sometimes the branches decorated with sweets, tinsel or have other decorations hanging from them.
On Maundy Thursday, there is a special 'Dance of Death' celebration in Verges, Gerona. A scary dance is performed, at night, by men dressed as skeletons.
Many towns and cities in Spain celebrate Easter with processions through the streets at night. Floats called 'tronos' are carried through the street. Each float has incredible decorated figures representing part of the Easter story on it. The floats and statues are often covered in gold, silver and fine cloths. They are also decorated with lots of fresh flowers. Forty or fifty people carry each trono on their shoulders on the procession, which can sometimes last between between four or five hours!
In Murcia, a tronos, telling the story of the Last Supper has real food on on the table. On Easter Sunday the twenty-six men who have carried the table in the procession around the town sit down and eat the food!
In southern Spain, the processions are often accompanied by drums being beaten by the local boys. In the village of Hellin, between eight and ten thousand drums are beaten at the processions between Holy Wednesday and Easter Sunday.
The most famous and biggest processions are held in Seville. Each one is organised by 'Co-fradias', or 'The Brotherhoods'. The Co-fradias try to put on the biggest and best procession and there is a lot of competition among them as to who has done so.