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Pentecost

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Pentecost

Pentecost is a church calendar feast day, celebrated fifty days after Good Friday; the first major event of the summer cycle in the Ukrainian ritual calendar. The feast of Pentecost known in Ukraine as Green Holidays, consisted of several days of ritual observances. Before the main day of the celebration (Sunday), houses were whitewashed and cleaned, and their earthen floors were worked over with on aromatic grass or herb. In addition, houses and churches were decorated both inside and out with tree branches sporting greenery. On Pentecost Sunday young people entertained themselves with song-games, the decorating, and ritual undressing a day later of a small birch tree, the plaiting of wreaths that were later floated in water, and the playing of games. In some parts of Ukraine it was also common for farmyards, outbuildings, and fields to be blessed by a priest leading a procession.

The commemoration of the dead had an important role in Pentecost celebrations. Graveyards were decorated with tree boughs and in some cases with lit candles.


 
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