What is Easter (or Easter Day)? Easter celebrates the resurrection of Jesus Christ on the third day after being crucified, as related in the New Testament of the Bible.
It is the most important celebration of the Christian Church. Easter is also known as Easter Day, Easter Sunday, Easter Sunday, Glory Sunday or Holy Sunday. Easter concludes Holy Week, days commemorating the crucifixion and death of Jesus on Good Friday and his resurrection and apparition to his disciples on Easter Sunday.
With Easter, a period known as Easter Time begins, lasting fifty days, and ending on Pentecost Sunday. According to the Scriptures, with the Passover God gives Christians hope for the resurrection and for a new way of life, represented in the return of Christ among the dead.
Easter is a mobile holiday, whose day varies every year. This is because the date is not set according to the civil calendar, but for the liturgical year, which is governed by the lunar cycles.
Thus, Easter is always located after the first full moon after the beginning of spring in the northern hemisphere, and the autumn in the south. In this sense, Easter can be celebrated between March 22 and April 25. And the day it falls is important to also calculate the dates of other religious holidays, such as Pentecost and Ascension.
The term Easter comes from the Latin páscae, which in turn comes from the Greek πάσχα (pasjua), an adaptation of the Hebrew פסח (pésaj), meaning “paso” or “salto”.
Origin of Easter
The origin of the celebration of Easter is found in the Old Testament of the Bible, in the book of Exodus. There is narrated the march of the people of Israel from the captivity in Egypt to the promised land, and explains how the Easter celebration should be carried out for the Hebrew people.
The Christians, however, separated the celebration of the Jewish and Christian Passover at the First Council of Nicaea (AD 325), and thus defined the elements of the Christian celebration, which celebrates the resurrection of Jesus Christ .
The Easter rabbit is a symbol of fertility, since at the end of winter and the beginning of spring, in the northern hemisphere, it was when animals began to appear with their young, remembering the rebirth of the earth.
The Easter egg represents the beginning of life. Therefore, in several countries chocolate eggs are given to friends to wish them a good Easter.
It is a large candle decorated with a cross in the center that is used during the Easter Vigil. His light symbolizes the resurrection of Christ.
The flowers represent life and joy for the resurrection of Jesus and the new life he brings us. The temples are usually adorned with many flowers.
The lights have a special role in the Easter celebrations: they are the ones that evoke the idea that Easter is the return of light for all in the resurrection of Christ. For this reason, not only candles are used, but also bright, cheerful and festive colors.
Passover, also known as Passover, is the Jewish holiday that commemorates the departure of the Hebrew people from Egypt, recounted in the biblical book of Exodus. The Hebrew people consider that this fact marks the birth of the town as such.
The celebration coincided in the Hebrew month (nissan) that corresponds to the last days of the months of March and April, when the spring season began.
The Jews continue with the tradition contemplated in the book Exodus. During the festival, which takes place over seven days, a special dinner is served with unleavened bread, wine, herbs and lamb, where the whole family gathers. During these holidays the intake of fermented cereals is prohibited.