Posts Tagged ‘Easter’
History of The Spring: What is the Vernal Equinox?
HISTORY OF THE SPRING In Colorado, we have a saying; we begin the first day of Spring like we began the Fall: with snow. This symmetry is relevant as the beginning of Spring and Fall coincide with the Equinox. This word is comprised of two Latin root words, aequus and nox, meaning “equal night,” referring…Read More
History of March: Why in like a Lion and out like a Lamb?
HISTORY OF MARCH March 1 used to be the first day of the year, at least in Ancient Rome, and in limited cases, it is again. How is that so? The month that can come “in like a lion and out like a lamb” is named after Mars, the Roman god of war and agriculture.…Read More
History of Ash Wednesday: Where does the Ash come from?
HISTORY OF ASH WEDNESDAY In the Western church, the first day of Lent is called Ash Wednesday from the ceremonial use of ashes, as a symbol of repentance, in the service prescribed for the day. It follows Mardi Gras, also known as Shrove Tuesday, and ends with Easter 40 days later, not counting Sundays. Lutheran,…Read More
History of Mardi Gras: Why is it called Fat Tuesday?
HISTORY OF MARDI GRAS In French, Mardi Gras means “Fat Tuesday.” It is celebrated the day after Shrove Monday and the day before Ash Wednesday as a last “fling” before the 40 days of self-denial of Lent, which precede Easter. Lent is a word that comes from the Middle English word “lente,” which means “springtime” — so…Read More
History of Shrove Monday: Ahead of Mardi Gras
HISTORY OF SHROVE MONDAY The Monday before Ash Wednesday is known as Shrove Monday. The three days before Ash Wednesday are known as “Shrovetide,” starting with Quinquagesima Sunday and ending on Shrove Tuesday, a day more popularly known as Mardi Gras. Quinquagesima meant the fiftieth day before Easter, specifically the last Sunday before Ash Wednesday,…Read More
History of Pentecost
HISTORY OF PENTECOST The Feast of Pentecost is taken from the Greek word πεντηκόστη which means “the 50th,” referring to the fiftieth day after Passover and Easter. This would coincide with the harvest festival Shavuot the “Feast of Weeks in the Jewish calendar.” In the Christian calendar, Passover played a part in several visits Jesus…Read More
History of Easter: The Players: Where are They Now?
HISTORY OF EASTER: WHAT HAPPENED TO THE PLAYERS AFTERWARD You may be asking yourself, “Self,” you ask, “where are they now?” And well you might ask. What happened to our players AFTER the events in the Easter story? HEROD ANTIPAS You may remember that I had said Antipas‘ taking his brother’s wife Herodias as…Read More
History of the Trial: How many did Jesus have?
THE TRIAL OF JESUS Beginning Thursday night and extending into Friday morning of Holy Week, the trial of Jesus, which led to his crucifixion, was, in reality, a series of about half a dozen trials distributed across several locations in Jerusalem. Some of these locations are captured in the tradition of the Via Dolorosa, the Way…Read More
History of Maundy Thursday: a Shere or Green Thursday?
HISTORY OF MAUNDY THURSDAY Amid the bustle of Palm Sunday, Good Friday, and Easter, Maundy Thursday is easy to overlook. Few calendars label it, and some churches don’t observe it at all, though it may be the oldest of the Holy Week observances. It’s worth asking why and how generations of Christians have revered this…Read More
History of Easter: The Sanhedrin — Who was this Council?
HISTORY OF THE SANHEDRIN The Greek word Συνέδριον, sunedrion, means literally “sitting together” and is usually translated as “council.” It is referred to in the New Testament alternately as “the Great Law-Court,” “the Court of Seventy-One,” and “the rulers and elders and scribes.” It was the supreme theocratic court of the Jews. It reflected the local…Read More
History of Easter: Why Bunnies and Eggs?
HISTORY OF EASTER The most joyous of Christian festivals and one of the first celebrated by Christians across the Roman Empire commemorates the resurrection of Jesus Christ. It is set on the first Sunday after the full moon following the vernal equinox. Meaning of the word Easter There are several theories about where we…Read More
History of Palm Sunday: How it starts Holy Week
HISTORY OF PALM SUNDAY The week we now call Holy Week or Passion Week starts this weekend with Palm Sunday. Why was this week so important that three of the gospel writers (Matthew, Mark, and Luke) devote a full third of their contents to reporting this week, and The Fourth Gospel (John) dedicates its entire last half? Jerusalem,…Read More