Pentecost is a major Christian observance in Anguilla that takes place on the fiftieth day of Easter – 49 days after Easter Sunday. It is also known as Whit Sunday, and is celebrated with a Whit Monday public holiday each year.
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Pentecost is the final celebration of the seven-week Easter period. According to Christian belief, Pentecost commemorates the day that the Holy Spirit descended upon the Apostles and disciples of Jesus, giving them the ability to speak in different languages to share the good news about Jesus.
The name “Whit” Sunday and Monday comes from the white clothes traditionally worn by those being baptised on this popular day for baptisms.
Unlike in many countries where this holiday has been neglected or lost entirely, it still persists in Anguilla. Attending services or mass on Whit Sunday, especially while wearing at least some white, is traditional. Family meals and get togethers may occur after service.
On Whit Monday, children may take to flying handmade kites, while many head to the beaches on Rendezvous Bay or Little Bay. Others examine the ancient petroglyphs inside Big Spring Cave, view wildlife at the East End Pond reserve, or visit local parks to breathe in some fresh air.