Tuesday, February 26, 2013

When Is Easter

  • When is Easter 2013?  Sunday March 31, 2013
  • When is Easter 2014?  Sunday April 20, 2014
  • When is Easter 2015?  Sunday April 5, 2015
  • When is Easter 2016?  Sunday March 27, 2016

Easter vs. Resurrection Sunday: What's the difference?

You might hear some Christians call this holiday Resurrection Sunday, but why?  Is there really a difference?  The name really depends on what you're celebrating.  If you're celebrating the resurrection of Christ after the third day, then the holiday really should be called Resurrection Sunday.  

If you're celebrating the pagan goddess Ishtar (pronounced Easter), the goddess of fertility (hence the eggs and bunnies) then you should call it Easter.  The origins of the name Easter come from the celebration of the pagan godess known as Tammuz, also known as Semiramis or Ishtar.  The day the pagans celebrated this fertility godess came to be known as Ishtar.  This day was celebrated with eggs and rabbits, known fertility symbols.  The celebration of 'Ishtar (Easter) was nearby to Passover but can sometimes be up to three weeks away from Passover.  

So, how did contemporary Christians come to celebrate the resurrection of our Lord by calling it Easter?  The Roman Catholic church, in an attempt to assimilate pagans into the church began incorporating pagan symbols, names, and holidays into the Catholic church and ceremony.  Other examples of this are the Christmas tree (also a pagan symbol) along with the time of year that Christmas is celebrated (close to the winter solstice but far from when Christ was actually born).

So, what is Resurrection Sunday then?

Ressurection Sunday is the celebration of the ressurection of Jesus Christ on the third day after his death on the cross.  You can read more about what the ressurection is here.  While it may be fun to do egg hunts and tell the kids about the "Easter bunny," it's important to remember that these are part of the pagan tradition not the Christian one.  If you do Easter egg hunts and candy from the Easter bunny, be sure to also teach the kids the true meaning of Resurrection Sunday and let them know that eggs and bunnies have nothing to do with Christ.

How is Resurrection Sunday celebrated? 

Typically Christians will go to a special 'sunrise service' that Sunday morning at church.  Sometimes these sunrise services are held outdoors if the weather is nice.  The rest of the day is typically spent with family, and involves a large meal that may include a large ham.

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1 comment:

  1. Thank you Jessica for this article. I also agree that it is important in the midst of the festivities to remind our children of the true importance of the Day.


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