Easter celebrations around the world
Pope Benedict XVI delivers his 'Urbi et Orbi' message and blessing from the central balcony of St. Peter's Basilica at the end of the Easter Mass on April 8, in Vatican City, Vatican.
An Orthodox priest baptizes a child in a church while believers celebrate Palm Sunday in Bobruisk, Belarus, April 8. Palm Sunday commemorates Christ's triumphant entry into Jerusalem a week before his crucifixion.
Five-year-old Ines Barbadillo plays the role of the angel during the "Bajada del Angel" festivity in Aranda de Duero, near Burgos, Spain, April 8. The "Bajada del Angel" festivity celebrates the appearance of the angel who announced the resurrection of Christ to the Virgin. In Aranda de Duero a child dressed as an angel flies through the air towards a statue of the Virgin Mary, whose head is covered by a black cloth, a sign of mourning for the death of Jesus. The angel removes the cloth, an expression of joy for the resurrection of Christ.
Pastor Kathleen Adams, right, leads members of the Schola Cantorum of the Annisquam Village Church through a path to celebrate Easter Sunday at Squam Rock in Annisquam, Mass., April 8.
An Ethiopian Orthodox Christian woman holds palm tree leaves during a Palm Sunday mass in the Chapel of the Deir Sultan Monastery in Jerusalem's Old City, April 8. Most Eastern European and Orthodox Christian churches celebrate the Easter liturgy according to the Julian calendar.
A rider tries to get back his horse after he fell as men of the Sorbian community ride on decorated horses during the traditional Easter procession in Ralbitz, Germany, April 8. Sorbian men wearing black coats and top hats sing holy songs on horseback and preach the message of Jesus' resurrection. The Sorbs are a Slavic, Catholic minority group in eastern Germany.
South Korean Christian devotees reenact Jesus' path to his crucifixion during a performance for Easter in Seoul, South Korea, April 8.
Belarussian Catholics prepare for a procession celebrating Easter in the small town of Ivenets, April 8.
Jan Hasenbanck, dressed as a pink bunny, performs with his wakeboard on a lake in Hamburg, Germany, Easter Sunday.
Women pray and sing during an Easter Sunday service at an outdoor church in Lilongwe, Malawi, on April 8.
Fishermen dressed as Roman soldiers collapse as they re-enact a scene from the Bible during mass as part of the Easter tradition at the church in the village of Sumartin, on the Adriatic island of Brac, April 7.
A woman stands at the grave of a relative after bringing incense and flowers during Orthodox Palm Sunday in Heresti cemetery, near Bucharest, April 8. Palm Sunday commemorates Jesus Christ's triumphant entry into Jerusalem, a week before his crucifixion. Romania's Christian Orthodox majority will celebrate Easter on April 15, a week after the Catholic believers.
An Iraqi Christian prays during an Easter mass at Armenian Church in Baghdad, Iraq, April 8.
Children look at the tubes containing gunpowder to later burn the "Judas Iscariote" alebrije in the church of Santa Rosa Xochiac town, in Mexico City, April 7. Each year the Espinosa family has huge puppets made to stage the burning of Judas after the Eucharistic celebration in the Catholic tradition. The Burning of Judas is an Easter-time ritual in many communities, where an effigy of Judas Iscariot is hanged on Good Friday, then burned on Easter Sunday.
Residents of Santa Rosa Xochiac town watch the burning of "Judas Iscariot" as charro in Mexico City, Saturday, April 7.
People stand around an Easter bonfire, an old German ethnic custom, in Elbingeroder, Germany, April 7.
Pope Benedict XVI carries the Paschal candle as he leads the Ceremony of the Light during the Holy Saturday Easter vigil mass at St. Peter's Basilica on April 7, in Vatican City, Vatican. The Pope will lead Easter Sunday Mass celebrating the resurrection of Jesus tomorrow in St. Peter's Square.
Young girls play with a costumed dog in their Easter finest during the annual Hat Ladies Easter promenade on April 7, in Charleston, S.C.
Archbishop of York Dr John Sentamu baptizes a local church goer in a water tank during an Easter Saturday ceremony on April 7, in York, England. Baptism of adults by total immersion is a symbolic ritual signifying a believer's death to their old life and a re-birth in Christ. New Christians are baptized into the faith the day before Easter Sunday which celebrates the resurrection of Jesus, three days after his execution on the cross.
Catholic clergy attend a procession during Holy Saturday inside the Church of the Holy Sepulchre, traditionally believed to be the burial site of Jesus Christ, April 7, in Jerusalem.
Christian worshippers visit the Church of Holy Sepulchre during Easter celebrations in Jerusalem's Old City, April 7.
A woman sweeps straw near a giant record-breaking Easter egg created by 44,858 colored eggs in Bludov, North Moravia, Czech Republic, April 7. The last record of this local tradition was 30,658 eggs set in 2007.
Chinese Catholics pray as they attend an Easter service at the historic South Cathedral in Beijing on April 7.
People watch as penitents carry a throne with a statue of Jesus Christ as they take part in the Sepulcro brotherhood procession during Holy Week in Malaga, southern Spain late April 6.
Penitents light their candles as they take part in the Calvario brotherhood procession during Holy Week in Malaga, southern Spain, April 6.
Members of the Catholic clergy hold candles during a procession at the traditional washing of the feet ceremony at the Church of the Holy Sepulchre ahead of Easter celebrations in the Old City of Jerusalem on Thursday April 5. Good Friday is one of the Christians holiest days, commemorating the crucifixion of Jesus Christ and his death at Golgotha.
Altar servers lead a procession while Indian Christians offers prayers during Good Friday at a Church in New Delhi, India, on Friday. According to publicly available sources only 2.3 percent of India's 1.2 billion people are Christians.
Christian arab worshippers carry a large wooden cross along the Via Dolorosa as they enter the Church of the Holy Sepulchre during the Good Friday procession in Jerusalem's old city on Friday. Thousands of Christian pilgrims took part in processions along the route where Jesus Christ is said to have carried the cross during his last days.
Penitents of the Caridad brotherhood walk the streets during the Holy Week procession on Thursday in Cordoba, Spain. Many towns in Spain celebrate Easter week with processions.
Local girls in traditional clothes of the Matyo minority, react as boys throw water during a rehearsal of the traditional Easter celebrations by the members of Mezokovesd folk dance group, in Mezokovesd, about 80 miles east of Budapest on Thursday. Locals from northeast Hungary celebrate Easter with the traditional "watering of the girls," a fertility ritual rooted in Hungary's tribal pre-Christian past, going as far back as the second century AD.
Gardener Steve Gilroy waters a nine-foot bunny topiary made of moss and ivy, balancing and egg made of Gerber daisies, in the Channel Gardens of New York's Rockefeller Center, Thursday.
Pilgrims walk with crosses as the Northern Cross pilgrimage makes its final leg of the journey to Holy Island on Friday in Berwick-upon-Tweed, England. More than 60 people, young and old, celebrated Easter by crossing the tidal causeway during the annual pilgrimage.
Penitents leave San Pedro church carrying a statue depicting Jesus during a Holy Week procession on Thursday in Madrid.
A Christian worshipper walks to the Church of the Holy Sepulchre on Good Friday in Jerusalem's Old City.
Dancers perform the Dance of the Death during a Holy Week procession in Verges, northeastern Spain, on Thursday. Dancers dress in body stockings with skeletons painted on them representing every age and condition of life and reenact a dance to the grave.
Hundreds of people follow 'Jesus' played by Paul Cattanach as he drags a cross through Pitt Street Mall as part of the Wesley Mission's Good Friday, Way of the Cross Procession in Sydney, Australia, Friday.
Worshipers take part in a procession in Malaga, Spain on Thursday.
Volunteers dressed as Roman Centurions drive nails through the palms of a Catholic devotee in a reenactment of the crucifixion of Jesus Christ on Good Friday at San Pedro Cutud, Pampanga province, north of Manila, Philippines. More than two dozen Catholic devotees have themselves nailed on the cross on Good Friday, a practice rejected by the Catholic Church but one that has become a tourist attraction.