On Holy Saturday, April 4, Fr. Gabe of St. Joseph’s Catholic Church invited us to share the Polish tradition of blessing the baskets of food for Easter.
The food items in the święconka or Easter basket have special significance.
- Bacon – Boczek / Słonina — Symbol of the abundance of God’s mercy.
- Bread – Chleb — The staff of life given by God.
- Easter Bread – Babka — A round loaf of rich, eggy, yeast dough with raisins reminiscent of the risen Lord.
- Butter – Masło — Dairy products are included to celebrate the end of Lent and the richness of our salvation. Butter is often shaped into a lamb (symbolic of the Paschal Lamb) and known as a baranek.
- Candle – Świeca — The candle symbolizes Jesus, the Light of the World
- Colored Eggs – Pisanki— Both colored and uncolored hard-cooked eggs indicate hope, new life and Christ rising from his tomb.
- Ham – Szynka — Meats are symbolic of great joy and abundance in celebration of Christ’s Resurrection.
- Sausage – Kiełbasa — The sausage links are symbolic of the chains of death that were broken when Jesus rose from the dead as well as of God’s generosity.
- Horseradish – Chrzan — This is a reminder of the bitterness and harshness of the Passion of Jesus and the vinegar it is mixed with symbolizes the sour wine given to Jesus on the cross.
- Salt – Sól — Salt symbolizes is represented to add zest to life and preserve us from corruption.
- Sweets – Słodycze Sweets suggest the promise of eternal life or good things to come.
Following the blessing of the baskets, St. Joseph’s hosted an Easter egg hunt for the children.