Easter Morn in Modica

April 23, 2011 (first posted April 2, 2010)

Easter morn in Modica: The resurrected Christ threads his way through back alleys, seeking, seeking. The black-shrouded Virgin comes forth, searching, searching.

Black Madonna in Modica on Easter Morning, Sicily, copyright Jann Huizenga

High noon: Bells peal. Mobs mill. Families hang from balconies. Mother and Son reunite. Her black mantle slips off to reveal a cape the color of a Sicilian sky. Wooden arms swing open. Doves fly. Statues kiss.

Easter Celebration in Modica, Sicily, copyright Jann Huizenga

12:05: The crowd, warmed by the spectacle and the Easter sun, kisses, too. Then home they go to the family extravaganza to fatten themselves on ricotta ravioli, Easter lamb pies, sweet breads, salads, marzipan lambs, ricotta-rich cassata, and everything else you can think of.

Watching the Easter Celebration in Modica, Sicily, copyright Jann Huizenga

Buona Pasqua!

Have you seen a moving Easter tradition in Sicily or elsewhere?

18 comments to Easter Morn in Modica

  • Lynn G

    Our first Pasqua in Modica and it was fabulous!!!!!!!!!! Buona Pasqua! The energy was incredible.

  • very nice article! I’m going to post it on my twitter account!

  • Jann, what a lovely post! It was wonderful to see these photos because they remeinded me of a procession I was able to witness in Spain when I was young. I still remember the people in the crowd carrying the statues and everyone walking behind them. Indeed, it is fantastic to keep old traditions alive in this fashion. Happy Easter!

    • Jann

      The Spanish ruled Sicily and left behind some of their elaborate rituals. Thanks for your comment, Bella!

  • so wonderful how these traditions are kept alive!

  • Lola Hodges

    The procession of the virgin sounds adorable. Our church processession last eve was candle lit and we processed into a dark church each carrying a candle. Brunch today at Andiomo’s was total satiation. For ‘state side’ it will do.
    Happy Easter and I love your website. Never, never end.

  • catherine Billups

    I have been going to Easter events for years even when I lived in Milan. They were part of the reason I ended up buying a house in Noto. Noto has a beautiful Good Friday evening procession. I have to choose a new one to see next year. Trapani has one of the most impressive and I have stayed there for the entire Easter week a couple of times. Buona Pasqua.

  • You had me at ricotta ravioli! Actually, you had me with the first picture of the crowds following the black-cloaked Madonna as it brought back cherished memories of the Easter we spent in Calabria, witnessing various processions, marching bands, giant easter eggs, and people done up in their Sunday best thronging the streets. Oh to be in Italia now that Pasqua’s there! Buon Pasqua, jann!

  • joe g.

    We’re at our casa in Modica tonight the evening before Pasqua. Can’t wait to see Vasa Vasa the procession of the kissing of Christ and the Virgin in the morning. So far this week have seen three processions, gives you a good feeling about the whole Easter season.

    Buona Pasqua Jann

  • Caltagirone has a similar tradition as well I believe, except they have St. Peter acting as mediator.


    I couldn’t see it this year, but I hope I can next year. Hopefully I can go down to see the Modica one as well!

    Buona Pasqua anche a te!

Site Meter BlogItalia.it - La directory italiana dei blog