Now that Easter weekend is finally here, that’ll probably mean devouring all the fondant-filled creme eggs, sticky hot buns, and mini sugar-coated eggs our stretchiest belts can handle.
But, of course, the Christian holiday is much more than its associated confectionery.
Easter celebrates the resurrection of Jesus Christ who, according to the New Testament, died on the cross on Good Friday and came back to life three days later. His resurrection is celebrated on Easter Sunday, which also marks the end of the 40-day fasting period of Lent.
From the origins of the Easter Bunny to the ever-changing dates of celebrations, here’s your essential guide to the holidays.
When is Easter 2022?
- Good Friday (holiday) – April 15
- Holy Saturday – April 16
- Easter Sunday – April 17
- Easter Monday (holiday) – April 18
This year, the Easter holiday weekend falls from April 15-18. Although the holiday is a moveable holiday, it always falls somewhere between March 21 and April 25 each year. It is calculated as the first Sunday after the first full moon following the first day of spring. The full moon is known as the Paschal (Passover) full moon.
Easter’s calculation methods are diabolically complicated and constitute a unique and confusing synthesis of mathematics, astronomy and theology.
As Christians believe that Jesus was crucified during the Passover holiday, Easter is celebrated around the same time. Nevertheless, different Christian groups already marked it on separate dates at the end of the 2nd century.
These date-related disagreements even set the course of British Isles history at the Synod of Whitby in AD 664, when the church’s preferred date Roman – rather than Celtic – became the norm. This move would have catapulted Britain into the European sphere of influence.
Although disputes over the exact timing of Easter have been used as a proxy for deeper power struggles for centuries, most now accept that it falls on the first Sunday following the first full moon after the vernal equinox.
In 2016 the Archbishop of Canterbury suggested Easter should fall on the same Sunday each year and the Very Reverend Justin Welby said Anglican leaders would join discussions with other church leaders to set the date for the first times, theoretically ending nearly 2,000 years. of controversy.
What do eggs have to do with Easter?
Eggs illustrate new life, just as Jesus began his new life on Easter Sunday after the miracle of his resurrection. When the eggs are opened, they are said to symbolize an empty grave.
Originally, it was forbidden to eat eggs in the week before Easter (known as Holy Week). They were saved and decorated as the celebration approached and given to children as gifts.
Sometimes they were colored red, in recognition of the blood sacrificed by Jesus during his crucification. Green was also used to symbolize spring regrowth after winter.
The first chocolate eggs appeared in France and Germany in the 19th century. As chocolate making techniques improved, the Easter egg as we know it was popularized.
What is the meaning of the Easter Bunny?
Rabbits and hares have been associated with spring for hundreds of years. It is believed that the Anglo-Saxon goddess of spring, Eostre – from whom many believe the Christian event derives her name – had a hare as her companion, symbolizing fertility and rebirth.
It’s no surprise that rabbits and hares are associated with fertility as they are both prolific breeders and regularly give birth to large litters in early spring.
The legend of the Easter Bunny is believed to have originated among German Lutherans, where the “Easter Hare” judged whether children had been good or bad as Easter approached.
Over time, it was incorporated into Christian celebrations, becoming particularly popular in Britain during the 19th century.
Many children believe that the Easter Bunny lays and hides baskets of colorful eggs, sweets and toys in their homes or around the garden the night before Easter Sunday – much like Santa Claus delivering gifts the day before. of Christmas.
This gave rise to the tradition of the Easter egg hunt which is still popular among children today.
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This notice was published: 2022-04-15 07:06:53