Easter Celebration 2021: The History And Significance Of The Season

by Duke Magazine

According to the New Testament of the Bible, Easter is believed to have taken place three days after the crucifixion of Jesus Christ by the Romans in which He died around 30 AD.

Easter is one of the most important days for Christians across the globe as it marks the resurrection of Jesus Christ after he was crucified on Good Friday. In 2021, Easter is being observed on April 4 (Sunday). Since the day marks the resurrection of Jesus Christ, it is also known as Resurrection Sunday or Easter Sunday. It is part of the Holy Week that also includes Maundy Thursday when Jesus took the Last Supper.

Jesus was crucified on the day of Good Friday and was laid in a tomb after his last supper with his disciples, which is commemorated as Maundy Thursday. 

According to the Biblical story, after Jesus’ crucifixion, his body was wrapped in linen, and he was buried in the tomb owned by Joseph of Arimathea. The tomb was then covered with a massive stone. It is also believed that on Sunday morning, angels rolled the stone away, and Jesus walked out of the tomb. To every Christian believer, the resurrection of Jesus symbolizes his victory over sin and death. Across the world, services are held on Easter, and typically people sing hymns dedicated to the festival.

In furtherance, Easter Sunday is right after Good Friday, and the Saturday before Easter is also considered holy by many and it is called Holy Saturday. Each year, Easter is determined by the Lunar Calendar of the Church, and the Sunday after the Paschall Full Moon is considered to be Easter Sunday.

As his followers and disciples mourn his demise, on the third day, when his disciples visited his grave, they found it to be empty. It is this day that marks the triumph of Christ over death and this also makes him the ‘Son of God’.

Easter Sunday rituals

Foods that are considered to signify the Spring season are particularly consumed on this day. Carrot cake, hot cross buns, sweet breads, eggs, ham, lamb, and spring peas are eaten on Easter Sunday.

One ritual very important on Easter Sunday is Easter egg. The tradition of consuming eggs on Easter started in the earlier times when the church did not allow the followers to consume eggs during the Holy Week. The eggs that were delivered throughout the week were decorated and gifted to children on Easter Sunday.

It is further said that the tradition of making satin-covered Easter eggs made from cardboard started during the Victorian era. These artificial eggs were filled with Easter gifts.

It is believed that eggs symbolized fertility and birth in certain pagan traditions in pre-date Christianity. Egg decorating may have become part of the Easter celebration in a nod to the religious significance of Easter, i.e., Jesus’ resurrection or rebirth.

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