Thousands of Christians celebrated Easter Mass in Jerusalem in an array of processions and prayer sessions.
In the ancient Church of the Holy Sepulchre, clergymen in flowing white and gold robes celebrated Mass, the air fragrant with incense.
Italian prime minister Mario Monti, in the church on a private visit, joined the masses of Christian faithful. He shook hands with pilgrims and spoke to monks in the Old City.
Just outside the ancient city's walls, about 350 Protestants sang Gospel music in the Garden Tomb, where Jesus is believed to be buried.
Easter Sunday caps a week of holidays that commemorate the crucifixion and return to life of Jesus.
Eastern Orthodox churches celebrate Palm Sunday today and Easter next week.