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One of the biggest holidays of the year, Easter, is hopping our way. And although popular mythology about the holiday often focuses on a large bunny delivering colored eggs and chocolate to children, there’s much more to it than that.
Christianity’s Most Important Holiday
In the Christina religion, Easter is the celebration of the resurrection of Jesus Christ. It is Christianity’s most important holiday. Unlike most holidays, it doesn’t fall on a set date every year. Instead, Easter is observed on the first Sunday after the full moon following the vernal equinox on March 21. As a result, Easter falls anywhere between March 22nd and April 25th each year.
Easter is a Season in the Christian Calendar
Easter actually represents a season in the Christian calendar, rather than just a single day. The 40-day period leading up to Easter Sunday is called Lent, and is meant to be a time of reflection and penance. Lent represents the time that Jesus spent alone in the wilderness before starting his ministry, in which he resisted numerous temptations by the devil. The day before Lent, known as Mardi Gras or Fat Tuesday, is an indulgent day of food and fun before fasting or the giving up of an indulgence begins.
The week leading up to Easter is called Holy Week. It includes Maundy Thursday, which commemorates Jesus’ last supper with his disciples, and Good Friday, which honors the day of his crucifixion. The 50-day period following Easter is called Eastertide, and memorializes the ascent of Jesus into heaven. For Christians, the symbol of the cross that Jesus was crucified on is an important element of Easter.
Easter’s Commercial Side
In addition to Easter’s religious significance, there is also a commercial side, similar to Christmas. Through the years, numerous pagan traditions and folk customs have become part of the holiday, including colored eggs, bunnies, chicks, nests and baskets of candy. Many of these have to do with the season of spring. Springtime is considered a time of rebirth and new life, and young animals are thought to represent the rebirth and return to fertility of nature in the spring.
Americans spend $1.9 billion annually on Easter candy, and over 90 million chocolate Easter bunnies are consumed each year (most of them ears first!) Of course, many folks also decorate eggs and organize Easter egg hunts for children, with the eggs secretly hidden by the Easter bunny himself (wink, wink!)
Churches’ Easter Decorations
Perhaps the most important Easter tradition of all is attending a church service. Most churches hold special services during Easter that celebrate Christ’s resurrection. In the same manner that churches are uniquely decorated for Christmas, they can also be custom adorned for Easter. Rooflines and trees can be wrapped with twinkling lights, and walls and crosses can be highlighted with a wash of LED lighting and more.
If you’d like to have your place of worship specially decorated for the Easter season, why not give Mobile Illumination a call? Over the years, we’ve designed church lighting and décor for special events including Easter, Christmas and others. We’re experts in holiday lights and decorating, so you know we’ll get the job done right with a minimum of disruption to your schedule.
From all of us at Mobile Illumination, have a very spiritual and fun-filled Easter. And try not to eat too many jellybeans, marshmallow chicks and chocolate bunnies.