Corpus Christi Procession
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The traditional Corpus Christi procession has been taking place on Lake Hallstatt for at least 389 years.This popular national holiday,steeped in local, historic tradition, will be celebrated by the lake.
Corpus Christi is a time when the people of Hallstatt decorate their traditional boats with flowers and foliage, and the village is prepared for a special celebration.The festivities date back to the Jesuits who formed colourful processions through the village. Due to the fact that there was limited open space in the old salt-mining village, the walking procession was replaced by boats and salt-carrying small ships on the lake. This afforded the local people some lovely views towards the "salt mountain" which had been their source of income for thousands of years.
The main procession, escorted by a choir and orchestra, assembles for worship at 9.00am in the parish and pilgrimage church "Our Lady of the Mountain" in Hallstatt.The lead celebrant is Otto Krepper, military deacon from Voralberg.
At around 10.00, the procession starts out towards the market square where the first "station" is made. The procession then continues down to the lake and along the lake shore from where the thousands of assembled Christians and visitors to Hallstatt will have stunning views of the bright and colourful collection of boats, and of the Holiest Sacrament. A second "station" is made by the War Memorial , and a third "station" of thanks-gving for young people will then be made by the bus terminal and the HTBLA.
The procession now continues on to the lake from where the "Plassen" - the mountain which guards over the people of Hallstatt - and also the "Salt Mountain" come into view. During the fourth "station" of thanks-giving, God is thanked for the "Mountain of Fortune" and the fruits of the earth.
Afterwards, the procession returns to dry land, and the procession continues back to the market square, accompanied by a local brass band. Here the final "blessing" is made and a Te Deum is sung. The first ever procession was formed in 1623, and since 1628 has been a gift from the salt mines of Hallstatt.
Very significant members of the Hallstatt Corpus Christi Procession are the "Hallstatt Corpus Christi Gun Firers" who announce the most important parts of the proceedings by firing "Prangerstutzen" traditional guns. 3 shots are fired by the church and then by each "station" along the way, informing us of the significance of the events which follow. The day has a very early start for these men. They begin firing their guns at 6.00 am at the far end of Hallstatt. They move out on to the lake in boats, and every fifteen minutes continue their journey across the lake towards the church. At 9.00 they arrive on foot at the church and join the main procession.
- Free entry
- Suitable for groups
- Suitable for kids (all ages)
- Suitable for seniors
- Suitable for single travelers
- Suitable for friends
- Suitable for couples