The Ukrainian Orthodox church "Ascension of the Holy Cross" in Sighetu Marmației holds the Easter service at 6 am, as a symbol of the prude women who rushed to the tomb of Christ early in the morning, before sunrise, to anoint his body with spices. Whilepriests Nicolae Lauruc and his son, Marius Lauruc, lit the candles, there were about 40 people in the historic building who left their baskets of food, carefully stacked, in the churchyard.
Throughout the three-hour ceremony, lines of baskets will stretch across the nearby park, which features a monument to Ukrainian poet Taras Shevchenko at its very centre. For priest Marius Lauruc, it is one of the most important masses of the year: "We begin with the Mass of the Resurrection, followed by the Easter Eucharist, which includes songs that most of the congregation knows by heart. Afterwards there is the holy liturgy, and, at the end, the food baskets that people bring are blessed and consecrated."