Young Catholics play pallamano or ‘handball’, a favourite Easter sport in medieval Europe.

Young Catholics from the Church of Saint Anthony celebrated the Easter season by taking a trip back in time to medieval Europe where the game of “handball” was traditionally played during this season.

Pallamano, which means “handball” in Italian, was a favourite Easter sport most commonly played in France and Germany.
“The ball represents the sun,” explained Bernice Wong, 19, one of the organisers of the event. “It was believed to take three leaps in rising on Easter morning. Tossing the ball upwards represents the resurrection of Jesus Christ.”

About 40 young people took part in this sporting activity at Woodlands Waterfront on May 24. It allowed them to have fun, and at the same time, foster camaraderie among each other. Modifications to the games were added, such as shouting “Alleluia!” or any form of praise to God when passing the ball.

The participants also laid out their picnic mats, read Scripture, shared and sang hymns and songs.

“The reflections and sharing were meaningful,” said Nicholas Chen, 13, adding that he made new friends through this activity.
Another participant Therese Tay, 15, said, “We all had a great time! I also got to know the other youths in my community better.”

Gabriel Lee, 17, one of the organisers, felt that this tradition was definitely worth reviving, and that “it was truly an out of the ordinary way to share the Easter joy and also to bond with the fellow youths in the community”.

Easter is a season of joy and celebration lasting for 50 days until Pentecost, which fell on June 8 this year.