Easter joy behind bars

Easter joy behind bars.

Easter joy behind bars. Image: OlgaBombologna / Shutterstock.com.

Elche’s Brotherhood tries to uplift spirits on Easter Sunday in the prisons throughout the province of Alicante.

The Brotherhood of the Santísimo Cristo del Perdón of Elche has distributed over 2,000 “Mona de Pascua” (Easter cakes) to inmates.

This tradition has been ongoing for the past 35 years and has continued to bring joy to the incarcerated population, complementing the historical practice of pardoning prisoners that traditionally occurred every Holy Week in the city.

The tradition of donating Easter cakes was briefly halted in 2020 due to the coronavirus pandemic.

However, on Easter Monday, the brotherhood resumed its charitable gesture by delivering 1,095 cakes to the Villena prison and distributing 1,160 cakes in Fontnivel, including 900 to the penitentiary centre and 260 to the psychiatric centre.

The cakes were crafted by the pastry shop “El Pastisset.”

Traditionally made with marzipan and adorned with boiled eggs, modern variations feature chocolate eggs as decorations.

The term “Mona” derives from Arabic, meaning gift.

While traditionally enjoyed on Easter Monday during family gatherings, Monas de Pascua are commonly seen in Spanish shops throughout Semana Santa or Holy Week.

Modern Monas de Pascua are intricately decorated with symbols of spring, such as chicks and feathers, and are often sweetened with chocolate glaze and almonds, reflecting contemporary tastes.

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Written by

Anna Ellis

Originally from Derbyshire, Anna has lived in the middle of nowhere on the Costa Blanca for 19 years. She is passionate about her animal family including four dogs and four horses, musicals and cooking.

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