Easter is a time of the year when many churches begin reaching out to their local communities, inviting them to Easter services and meals.
For Christians around the globe Easter represents a celebration of the resurrection of Jesus, following his crucifixion three days earlier.
Easter’s Seemingly Confusing Dates
The date is selected to approximately coincide with the Jewish Passover celebration in the month of Nisan, which is based on calculations made using both solar and lunar calendars.
By all appearances, Easter moves around the calendar on shifting Sundays between March and April to such an extent that without understanding Gregorian calendar calculations that factor in Nicaean pronouncements, the exact date appears to be randomly selected every year.
In reality the date makes complete sense. In 325 AD, the Council of Nicaea’s pronouncement set the date of Easter to be on the Sunday immediately following the moon is after the spring equinox.
Simply put, Easter’s exact calculation depends on the date of the next full moon once spring begins.
Easter’s Many Ceremonies
It may surprise Americans to learn that their popular celebrations of Easter involving bunnies, baskets, painted eggs and jellied treats is not the only way in which the holiday is practiced.
On the more extreme end of rituals, Philippine residents of Pampanga’s Central Luzon province go through the actual crucifixion ceremony, allowing their hands and feet to have nails hammered into them and then dragged off to be crucified by fellow church members dressed as Roman soldiers.
On a lighter note, willow branches figure prominently in certain European traditions.
In Finland, youngsters dress up in witch costumes, delivering crepe paper charms and willow branches adorned with feathers as a symbolic gesture meant to promote blessings on their neighbors’ households.
The children are given treats in return for these charms and their benedictions.
Boys and girls in the Czech Republic reenact a ritual involving the pouring of water on each other and then striking each other with willow twigs.
Greek Orthorox Easter celebrations involve eggs dyed red and the eating of tsoureki, a cultural bread.
Fasika, the ceremony of the Ethiopian Orthodox Christians begins with several days of prayer and fasting and resolves with a large Easter banquet, breaking the fast.
About Mighty Fortress Church
Located in the northern cities of Minneapolis, MN, Mighty Fortress Church was founded to fulfill the mission of creating an uplifting church that addresses multiple levels of spiritual and human physical needs.
Mighty Fortress applies the biblical principles taught by the church’s leadership, promoting an experiential and life changing Christian living.
As a church body, Mighty Fortress is responsive to the individual needs of its members and visitors. Their goal is to help their congregation develop long term, positive and substantive relationships with individuals sharing similar experiences and beliefs.
The worship atmosphere features the church’s choir and band and a focus on celebrating the impact that God has had on the church members’ lives.
Visitors are encouraged to come as they are. The church culture promotes acceptance of and sensitivity towards people from all walks of life and every culture and race.