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Easter celebrated in Slovak prisons

EASTER weekend in Slovakia was celebrated by those serving time in the country’s prisons. On Good Friday, Bartolomej Juhás, a vicar from the Ordinariate of the Armed Forces and Armed Corps of Slovakia, which supervises prison chaplains, laid down on the earth in the courtyard at Bratislava’s Palace of Justice, the biggest detention facility in the country, to show his humility in opening the traditional Easter ceremonies for the prisoners.

EASTER weekend in Slovakia was celebrated by those serving time in the country’s prisons. On Good Friday, Bartolomej Juhás, a vicar from the Ordinariate of the Armed Forces and Armed Corps of Slovakia, which supervises prison chaplains, laid down on the earth in the courtyard at Bratislava’s Palace of Justice, the biggest detention facility in the country, to show his humility in opening the traditional Easter ceremonies for the prisoners.

Along with the prison chaplain, Ľuboš Kaščák, Juhás commemorated the agony and death of Jesus Christ as three prisoners performed traditional Easter hymns.

“Together with others, they considered how they could alleviate the pain they caused themselves and to others,” the chancellor of the Ordinariate, Tibor Ujlacký, told the SITA newswire.

Easter services in the Palace of Justice continued with a Saturday Easter vigil and Easter Sunday and Monday services in the prison chapel. Deans and chaplains in all other prisons and detention centres in Slovakia also prepared religious activities for inmates, including the sacrament of reconciliation, worship of the Way of the Cross, Easter adorations, pilgrimages, catechesis sessions, screenings of movies, concerts and theatre performances, lectures and discussions, and rosary praying.

In addition to religious activities prisoners were offered sports, games and cultural events focused on Easter traditions.

Peter Bubla, spokesman for the Justice Ministry, told the TASR newswire that “on Good Friday, White Saturday and Easter Sunday, inmates were able to participate in religious feasts” and added that the inmates also took part in quizzes, lectures and discussion about the holidays.

Prisoners’ meals were adjusted for the holidays. “Traditional meals from potatoes, spinach, boiled eggs, mutton, poultry, and pork were cooked. On Easter Friday, fasting-day meals are made,” Bubla said.

Of the 10,647 prisoners in Slovakia, 9,131 have been sentenced by courts and 1,516 are in custody awaiting trial.


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