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Orthodox Easter Day in Ukraine

Easter Day is a public holiday across Ukraine and celebrates Jesus’ resurrection from death, as told in the Christian bible. Ukraine’s Easter holiday follows the Orthodox Easter date, which is often different from the Easter date determined by other Christian churches.

Is Orthodox Easter Day a Public Holiday?

Orthodox Easter Day is a public holiday. It is a day off for the general population, and schools and most businesses are closed.

In 2019 it falls on a Sunday. Due to this, some businesses may choose to follow Sunday opening hours.

Ascension Day

Easter Sunday celebrates the Christian belief of Jesus' resurrection.

©iStockphoto.com/ Marcus Lindström

What Do People Do?

Easter is known as Velykden (The Great Day) and is a day off work in Ukraine. Special Easter services are held in churches and many families celebrate the day with a special Easter meal. Easter meals often include the Paskha (a type of Easter bread) and an egg painted in red.

An Easter basket is filled with pysanky (decorated eggs) and blessed early on Easter Day in many homes. There are various Easter games, including one called “Knocking”. This game involves 2 players who have 1 egg each and try to knock each other’s eggs. The first one to have their egg broken loses the game.

Public Life

Easter Day is a national public holiday in Ukraine so many shops, museums, and libraries, as well as government offices and educational institutions are closed. The Monday after Easter Sunday is a public holiday, so people can have a day off work and school. This rule applies to all public holidays that fall on a Sunday in Ukraine.

Background

Ukraine’s Easter holiday follows the Easter dates set by the Orthodox Christian Church. Many Orthodox churches base their Easter date on the Julian calendar, which differs from the Gregorian calendar that is used by many western countries. Therefore the Orthodox Easter period often occurs later than the Easter period that falls after the time of the March equinox.

Symbols

The pysanky (decorated raw eggs) are part of the Easter Day celebrations in the Ukraine. The names and meanings of the pysanky designs vary across regions. According to one superstition, pysanky were meant to protect homes from evil spirits and misfortune.

About Orthodox Easter Day in other countries

Read more about Orthodox Easter Day.

Orthodox Easter Day Observances

YearWeekdayDateNameHoliday Type
2010SunApr 4Orthodox Easter DayNational holiday, Orthodox
2011SunApr 24Orthodox Easter DayNational holiday, Orthodox
2012SunApr 15Orthodox Easter DayNational holiday, Orthodox
2013SunMay 5Orthodox Easter DayNational holiday, Orthodox
2014SunApr 20Orthodox Easter DayNational holiday, Orthodox
2015SunApr 12Orthodox Easter DayNational holiday, Orthodox
2016SunMay 1Orthodox Easter DayNational holiday, Orthodox
2017SunApr 16Orthodox Easter DayNational holiday, Orthodox
2018SunApr 8Orthodox Easter DayNational holiday, Orthodox
2019SunApr 28Orthodox Easter DayNational holiday, Orthodox
2020SunApr 19Orthodox Easter DayNational holiday, Orthodox

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