Magazine article Anglican Journal

Being Easter People

Magazine article Anglican Journal

Being Easter People

Article excerpt

APRIL IS HERE, and for Canadians fortunate enough to be surrounded by caring family or friends, there is much to celebrate-both sacred and secular.

After Good Friday and Holy Saturday, when devout Christians reflect on the suffering and death of Jesus, comes Easter Sunday, a joyful celebration of the resurrection that begins with a eucharist; it is often capped by a feast, and for the children, an exhilarating hunt for those pastel-painted eggs. On this same weekend, the Jewish community begins its weeklong observance of Passover, which commemorates the liberation of Israelites from slavery in ancient Egypt.

April brings the splendour of spring, of course. Sweetness fills the air as once again, flowers of every imaginable hue bloom, birds compose a symphony, and days--bathed in glorious, aureate light-arrive, and linger, at last.

These celebrations and the arrival of spring have--since time immemorial--symbolized hope and renewal, a chance to start over. Spring, declared Henry David Thoreau,"is a natural resurrection, an experience in immortality."

But as important as it is to celebrate the beauty of new life, one must not forget that for some, April will be just like any other month of the year, where each day can be an interminable struggle to simply survive. When one is in desperate need of food and shelter, suffering from depression and isolation, unable to make ends meet, fleeing violence or in excruciating pain from an incurable disease, picture-perfect April can seem like a cruel joke.

Christians often declare,"We are an Easter people. …

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