HOLY WEEK CRAFT KIT: Lazarus Saturday

This tutorial page is part of the HOLY WEEK CRAFT KIT created by Orthodox Pebbles.

THANK YOU for purchasing the Orthodox Pebbles Holy Week Craft Kit! We are very excited to be doing this Christ-centered creative journey together with you. Please scroll down for some background on today’s theme and for a tutorial on how to do today’s craft.

The Raising of Lazarus is the most important miracle that our Lord Jesus Christ performed, just before He entered His Holy Passion. It is one of the Great Feasts of the Church, and it is celebrated the Saturday preceding Palm Sunday, right before Holy Week begins.

Bible reading: John 11:1-45

It is a popular Greek tradition on Lazarus Saturday to bake sweet bread rolls in the shape of Lazarus, called Lazarakia. Our craft is inspired by this tradition. If you would like to also try making real Lazarakia, please scroll down for our favorite recipe.

Lazaraki lacing card


You will need:

  • The printed Lazaraki template provided in the kit
  • The shoe lace provided in the kit
  • A pair of scissors
  • A hole puncher


How to make the craft

Cut out the Lazaraki shape. Use the hole puncher to punch several holes all around the Lazaraki, avoiding the head. The child can lace the shoe lace through the holes to wrap the Lazaraki up just like Lazarus was wrapped in cloth strips.



We have also created a Holy Week planner and a complete lesson plan for Lazarus Saturday that we are offering on our website for free.

Lazarakia recipe

2 lbs unbleached, all purpose flour
3/4 cup olive oil
1 cup cane sugar
2 packets active dry yeast
1-1/2 cup lukewarm water (plus a little more if needed)
1 teaspoon orange peel, one teaspoon cinnamon or a combination of both
1/2 teaspoon salt

Line two baking sheets with parchment paper. Mix all the dough ingredients and then knead well, until the batter becomes a nice soft dough. You may need to add a little extra water, depending on the quality of the flour. Cover and let the dough rest for about 15 minutes in a warm place.

Shape an egg-sized amount of dough into an oblong. For the hands, form two little ropes of dough and place them in an x-shape across the middle of the oblong. Form a third little rope into a circle and place it on top of the oblong for the head. Stick two cloves in the middle of the head for eyes.

Place the Lazarakia on the baking sheets and let rise in a warm place until doubled in size, about 1 hour. Bake in a preheated 350°F oven for 30-40 minutes, or until the bread rolls turn golden-brown.

Variation: A favorite, while not so traditional, variation is to wrap a piece of vegan dark chocolate inside the oblong shape before adding the embellishments. The chocolate melts during baking, thus creating chocolate-filled Lazarakia.