Easter is an ancient and important Christian festival celebrating the resurrection of Jesus Christ. Originally called Pascha due to its association with the Jewish Passover, Easter is preceded by the 40-day season of Lent, a time of penitence and preparation. The early Church used the Lenten season as a time of preparation for baptism, administered at sunrise on Easter Sunday. The name “Easter” is derived from a spring festival honoring the Anglo-Saxon goddess Eostre.
A Controversy emerged in the late 2nd century regarding the appropriate day for Easter observance. Rome observed the first Sunday after the first full moon following the spring equinox. However, some Eastern communions, more keenly attuned to the calendar of Judaism, observed the Resurrection on the third day following the 14th of Nisan, the Passover. Since 14 Nisan, based on a lunar calendar, could come any day of the week, there was no guarantee that Easter would always be observed on Sunday. The Council of Nicaea (325 c.e.) finally determined that the Roman practice would prevail. This controversy was the first in a series of rifts that led to the eventual schism of the Eastern and Western churches.
Because of Easter
• Because of Good Friday you can look back and not be afraid.
• Because of Easter you can look ahead and not be afraid.
• Because of Ascension Day you can look up and not be afraid.
• Because of Pentecost you can look inward and not be afraid.
 Gregg, D. L. (2000). Easter. In D. N. Freedman (Ed.), Eerdmans dictionary of the Bible (D. N. Freedman, Ed.) (362–363). Grand Rapids, MI: W.B. Eerdmans.
 Morgan, R. J. (2000). Nelson's complete book of stories, illustrations, and quotes (electronic ed.) (250–251). Nashville: Thomas Nelson Publishers.
Published on Sunday, April 8, 2012 @ 6:10 AM CDT