Gustavo Morello, a professor at Boston College, is a sociologist of religion focused on Latin America.

Posts By This Author

What Early Christians Tattooed on Their Bodies

The practice started shortly after Jesus’ crucifixion and remains an important tradition for some Christians today.

An Orthodox Christian woman belonging to the Amhara ethnic group in Ethiopia. Photo: Franck Metois / Alamy via Reuters.

Holy Week and Easter are perhaps the most important days in the Christian calendar. Many associate those celebrations with church services, processions, candles, incense, fasting, and penances. However, there is another tradition that many Christians follow — that of tattooing. Historically, Easter was an important time for tattoos among some Christian groups. Today, Christian tattooing happens in many parts of the world and all year around. Some Christians visiting Jerusalem around Easter will get a tattoo of a cross, or a lamb, usually on their forearms.