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International Assumption Day Traditions

The traditions, customs, and events involving Assumption Day varies depending on the culture celebrating the holiday. In this article, you will encounter the different ways that countries, such as Italy, France and Poland pay homage to the holiday centered on the Virgin Mary.

Italy

In Italy, Assumption Day is looked at as a day of good fortune. Colorful processions take to the streets to celebrate the Feast of the Assumption. In Sicily and rural regions outside of Rome, the biggest attraction of the holiday is a large procession. A group of people carry a statue of Mary decorated with flowers to meet up with a statue of Christ. The people wait for the coming of Mary’s Statue.

Guatemala

In Guatemala, Assumption Day is considered a public holiday that serves as a time for family to gather and enjoy elaborate feasts. The major cities hold parades that attract a great number of people. While celebrations are seen throughout the country, the day is also used as a time for reflection.

France

Viewed as an important holiday in the country, the French celebrate the feast of the Assumption of Mary. The day is observed in rural regions, as well as during church-related festivals. The Virgin Mary plays a significant role in the people of France because she is the patron saint of the country since 1638. On August 15, many Catholics in France pay a visit to a church. Festivals may include parades, sports, markets or communal meals.

Poland

Within the Eastern Church of Poland, the feast of Assumption is referred to as “Falling Asleep of the All Holy Mother of God.” Others may call the holiday the feast of Our Lady of Herb because the city is often decorated with bouquets of pleasant smelling herbs. The day marks a major belief of the church. For starters, all women who are named Mary are supposed to keep the house open to pay homage to the Virgin Mary. She is expected to welcome any guests that come to her home. The churches in Poland fill with children singing hymns in both Polish and English. Regional, cultural dances are performed.

Germany

Some states in Germany celebrate Assumption Day , with some regions hailing it as a public holiday. Many people visit the church and spend time collecting herbs. The start of the celebration is marked by the ringing of the church bell. Associated traditions of the country involve trees and plants. For instance, the first walnuts (referred to as Mary’s nuts) are offered to the children. Herb collecting is another custom of the holiday. Popular herbs for the day include agrimony, clover, mullein, mugwort, verbena, and yarrow.

Costa Rica

Assumption Day in Costa Rica is celebrated with a line of people that form a procession that make their way down the street. Colorful dresses are a popular garment choice for the holiday, which also incorporates the celebration of Mother’s Day in Costa Rica.