Good Friday, German Catholic style

9 Apr

In the spirit of tourism, we decided to see what the locals get up to when we were visiting Steve’s brother in Delbruck, North Rhine-Westphalia, last week.  After sampling the delights of Pada-Bini Land, an indoor playcentre much like we have at home and therefore in need of no further description, and a gigantic swimming bath with whirlpools, wave machines and enough semi-naked people to make Piccadilly Circus look like a ghost town, we wanted to see something a bit more cultural.  Delbruck is renowned for being fiercely Catholic, so we  joined the Good Friday procession to the Stations of the Cross.

On a cool, sunny morning, we watched as thousands of people filed somberly though the small town, following the procession of decoratively dressed Priests, a chanting choir and townsperson playing Jesus carrying a heavy cross over his shoulder.  At each roadside Station, the Priests gave a small service in German, accompanied by the clacking of wooden rattles and murmured responses from the crowd.

Not being Catholic, and having a German vocabulary that only stretches as far as pirate ships, booking hotel rooms and requesting an extra plate to share the rosti, I didn’t really know what was happening.  But the quite, contemplative atmosphere and the religious music were very evocative.

We stayed for three Stations, then Dickon started singing “hmm hmm said the little green frog one day” in his clear, piercing voice, somewhat shattering the atmosphere of calm.  So we beat a hasty retreat.

This post is part of Photo Friday at Delicious Baby.  For more travel pics, head on over.


6 Responses to “Good Friday, German Catholic style”

  1. Sophie 09/04/2010 at 12:02 pm #

    It’s interesting to watch religious ceremonies abroad. We’re typical secular Scandinavians, so my kids often have lots of questions and comments. Can lead to some interesting discussions 🙂

    • itsasmallworldafterallfamily 09/04/2010 at 1:29 pm #

      I like how even a normal visit to the inlaws can throw up something interesting.

  2. Wanderluster 09/04/2010 at 2:01 pm #

    Interesting peek into another world. Where are the chocolate eggs? 🙂

    • itsasmallworldafterallfamily 09/04/2010 at 2:04 pm #

      Weirdly, they don’t really have eggs like us. Lots of Kinder rabbits and real dyed eggs, but no chocolate ones. We did have Easter apples and Easter bread though.

  3. Cate 10/04/2010 at 4:24 pm #

    Wonder why he started up with that song, but it’s a pretty smart way of encouraging mum to exit the place.

    • itsasmallworldafterallfamily 10/04/2010 at 4:55 pm #

      I don’t think it was anything significant! He’d just learnt it at nursery.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: