Easter traditions make day special

Published 12:01 am Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Many of us have fond memories of Easter. One of my favorite memories is of dying and creating beautiful, pastel-colored eggs.

Easter is a religious holiday, but some of its customs, such as Easter eggs, are linked to pagan traditions. The egg is an ancient symbol of new life and has been associated with pagan festivals celebrating spring.

From a Christian perspective, Easter eggs are said to represent Jesus’ emergence from the tomb and resurrection. Just as a chick breaks out of an egg, so had Jesus broken free of the tomb of death.

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Easter eggs remind us that Jesus conquered death and gives us eternal life.

In our family as a child on Easter Sunday, we all dressed in our new clothes and went to church for the most important Sunday of the year.

I didn’t know then about the significance of Easter. This week I have been reflecting on the events in the life of Christ that lead up to Resurrection Sunday, Easter Sunday.

On Ash Wednesday, Christians traditionally receive the mark of ashes on their forehead to remind them of their sins and their need to repent.

While this act has not been part of my tradition, I understand the importance of humbly recognizing and confessing ones sin to a holy God. On Maundy Thursday, Christians remember Jesus’ Last Supper with his disciples.

They break bread to remind them of Christ’s broken body. And they drink wine or juice, to remind them of Christ’s shed blood. Sometimes, they will wash each other’s feet to remind them to serve and love each other as Christ loved his disciples and served them by washing their feet.

On Good Friday, Christians remember Christ’s death. From the darkness of the Crucifixion to the light of Easter, this beautiful story reminds Christians everywhere that because of Christ’s sacrifice and resurrection, we too will conquer death and receive the glorious gift of eternal life.

Finally, on Easter Sunday, Christians celebrate Christ’s resurrection.

As a child, I received my Easter basket full of colored eggs and chocolates in the morning. Egg hunts were always a part of our Easter Sunday but could not take place until we had enjoyed Easter dinner, which for us was a meal that every family contributed to and included ham and deviled eggs, just to mention a few favorites.

Finally, the egg hunt could begin. Everyone would go outside. All the cousins would have great fun running through the spring grass and filling our baskets with eggs while our parents, grandparents, aunts and uncles enjoyed watching the search.

You won’t find them in the Bible, but many cherished Easter traditions have been around for centuries, and I am glad to say that they are part of my family’s traditions also.

Thanks to History.com for contributing to this article.

Crosspoint Church will be hosting an Easter Egg hunt from 10 to 11:30 a.m. There will be a story time, crafts, activities and prizes. All are invited to this event and to join us for Easter Sunday Worship at 10:30 a.m.


Renae Loy is the director of children’s ministries at Crosspoint Church in Natchez.