Vendredi Saint en Roumanie. Traditions et superstitions.

Wondering what are the traditions and superstitions related to the Good Friday in Romania? What are the dos and don’t in this holy Orthodox day?

First of all, you need to know that during this Friday, Jesus Christ was believed to have been crucified and he suffered a lot. That’s why the Orthodox christians recommend total fasting for this day.

Good Friday - total fasting

In this day, there’s no religious service and the only ceremony is removing the Holy Epitaph from the altar and placing it on a table in the middle of the church, which symbolizes Jesus’ descent from the cross and the following steps for his funeral.

Today it’s forbidden to consume vinegar or nettles, to be angry on someone or to work the land or plant trees. Women are not allowed to bake, weave, stitch or wash the laundry. It is believed that people who don’t work today won’t have any headaches and will have good luck until the next Good Friday.

Romanian cozonac

The ethnographic specialists conclude that, in the more traditional communities, it was believed that in this Friday, along with the Jesus’ death, a portal of chaos and darkness is opened and people are left without the divine protection.

In some parts of the country, it is believed that if it rains, it’s going to be a bountiful year; if not, it’s going to be very poor.

In Bucovina, Moldova and Transylvania, some even say that those who choose not to eat anything in the Good Friday will be cured of any skin diseases.

Good Friday - washing feet in flowing water

Last but not least, it is said that in the morning, just before sunrise, if people walk barefoot in the dew and wash their feet in flowing water (river, stream etc), they will be healthy and have good luck all year long.

What do you think? Are these traditions specific only for the Orthodox religion or you find them familiar as well?