Wow, amazing the world is busy as everyone is preparing for the upcoming Easter Sunday. Easter is a “movable feast” that is always held on a Sunday between March 22 and April 25. Do you know how the exact date of Easter is determined? Find out why the date changes every year and how this holiday relates to the first Full Moon of spring.
The Easter festival celebrates the resurrection of Jesus and is considered a rebirth of Christianity. The earliest references of the celebration of this festival date back to the 2nd century. In ancient history, many controversies arose regarding the celebration of this festival.
The first evidence of controversy surrounding the festival dates back to the 2nd century when Bishop Victor tried to punish bishops of Asia for celebrating the festival.
Easter Sunday is normally celebrated in the church by Christians. It is one of the most important celebrations observed by Christians all over the world. Since Easter represents the fulfillment of God’s promises to mankind, it is the most important holiday on the Christian calendar.
As we know from the Gospels, Jesus Christ rose from the dead on the third day following his crucifixion, which would be Sunday. His resurrection marks the triumph of good over evil, sin, and death. It is the singular event that proves that those who trust in God and accept Christ will be raised from the dead.
Easter Sunday 2021
While Easter sometimes falls later in the year, Easter 2021 is April 4, so those celebrating with family and friends and gathering for Easter meals will do so much earlier than they might have in years past (weeks earlier when compared with 2019!).
Of course, this also means that the beginning of Lent and Ash Wednesday occurs earlier, too. The entire 2021 Lenten season comes to a close on Saturday, April 3.
History of Easter
Easter is the most important feast day in the Christian calendar. Regularly observed from the earliest days of the Church, Easter celebrates Christ’s resurrection from the dead, following the crucifixion.
It marks the end of Holy Week, the end of Lent, and the last day of the Easter Triduum (starting from the evening of Maundy Thursday, through Good Friday, Holy Saturday, and Easter Sunday), as well as the beginning of the Easter season of the liturgical year.
The exact origin of the word “Easter” is unclear. It’s not as simple as saying it has religious origins or pagan origins.
In the New Testament (1 Corinthians 5:7), Paul connects the resurrected Christ to Passover. He refers to Jesus as the paschal lamb who has been sacrificed for his people’s salvation. Jesus celebrated the Last Supper with his disciples during Passover, so it makes sense that the Feast of the Resurrection is connected with the Jewish holiday.
Today, Christians celebrate the “Paschal mystery.” You can get more details about the history of Easter here.
Below are the norms held during the Holy Week;
- Palm Sunday; is the Sunday before Sunday. It is the first day of Holy Week and celebrates Jesus’s arrival in Jerusalem riding on a donkey. Crowds of people came out of the city to greet him, throwing down palm branches on the road. Anglican and Roman Catholic churches give out small crosses made from palm leaves, as a reminder of Jesus’s entrance into Jerusalem and his death on the cross. Some Christians keep these in their homes all year as a symbol of their faith.
- Maundy Thursday; this the Thursday before Easter. On Maundy Thursday Christians remember when Jesus ate the Passover meal with his disciples, breaking bread and drinking wine. Christians refer to this meal as the Last Supper.
- Good Friday; Good Friday is the Friday before Easter Sunday. It commemorates the execution of Jesus by crucifixion. Good Friday is a day of mourning in church. During special Good Friday services Christians remember Jesus’s suffering and death on the cross, and what this means for their faith.
- Easter Sunday; Easter Sunday marks Jesus’s resurrection. After Jesus was crucified on Friday his body was taken down from the cross and buried in a cave tomb. The tomb was guarded by Roman soldiers and an enormous stone was put over the entrance.
Above are the activities of the Holy Week, which are always the same for every tear. To get more details about the Holy Week simply click here. You can also get more details on Easter Sunday here.
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