Easter Sunday: Let's Not Forget What It's Truly About
With all the excitement Easter Sunday brings – egg hunts, family gatherings with plenty of food for second helpings and seasonal candy often found in those Easter eggs – it’s sometimes easy for us to get consumed in the festivities.
While it’s all fun and makes for good memories with family and friends (believe me, I enjoy all of this, too), let’s not forget what this season is truly about: Jesus Christ’s resurrection and what it means for each of us.
“As they entered the tomb, they saw a young man dressed in a white robe sitting on the right side, and they were alarmed. “Don’t be alarmed,” he said. “You are looking for Jesus the Nazarene, who was crucified. He has risen! He is not here. See the place where they laid him. But go; tell his disciples and Peter, ‘He is going ahead of you into Galilee. There you will see him, just as he told you’” (Mark 16:5-7).
Easter marks the end of Holy Week and the conclusion of the Paschal Triduum. It is the beginning of the Easter season of the liturgical year.
As we know from the Gospels, Jesus suffered, died and was buried; and on the third day after his crucifixion he rose again. His resurrection represents the triumph of good over evil, as Christ has overcome sin and death.
Good over evil; often, it’s so easy to say those words without letting them sink in. By sacrificing himself for humanity, Jesus saved all of us from sin, and his resurrection is a promise of new life.
Let’s remember that on Easter Sunday as we gather with loved ones.
Lent ended on Holy Thursday. So on Easter Sunday, we can now again indulge in the things we gave up for Lent – the traditional 40-day sacrifice replicating Jesus’ 40-day journey into the desert.
As for the Easter egg hunts many young ones will partake in this Sunday, racing around the grass to scoop up candy-filled plastic eggs, I was recently reminded of the symbolism of the eggs, which is the Risen Christ. Just as a chick breaks through the shell to begin life, so does our Lord come forth from the tomb, according to “How to Make Your House a Home,” by Rev. Bernard Stokes, O.F.M.
Another tradition, according to an article on the Catholic Company website, states Mary Magdalene carried a basket of eggs on Easter morning to Jesus’ tomb, and upon arrival when she found the stone rolled away, the eggs turned red (or other bright colors).
As a child, I’m not sure I was aware of this or quite understood the significance of the Easter egg. I was too eager to dash through the yard to gather as many eggs as possible. Maybe, before we yell “Go!” to the kids for their egg hunts, we can share this symbolism with young ones.
So, while you gather with family and friends this Sunday, let’s remember the reason behind the blessed day and why we are all together.