Easter is one of the most fondly celebrated holy festivals of Christians. It is the sacred celebration for Christ's rebirth. Churches all over are decorated with flowers and filled with worshipers.
Earlier Easter was celebrated on separate days of the week. Then later on a rule was issued, which stated that Easter shall be celebrated on a Sunday, between March 22 and April 25. So, the first Sunday which comes after the first full moon following March 21 is celebrated as 'Easter'. That Easter Sunday marks the end of lent, a 40 day period of fasting and prayers.
Symbols of Easter
There are many symbols associated with Easter- such as eggs, rabbits, chicks, and lilies.
The Easter Bunny or the Easter Rabbit is a popular image of the holiday. Rabbits are known as the most fertile, as of which they are marked as important symbol of the festival. The first kind of Easter bunnies were made of pastry and sugar. However today, the Bunny is often made from chocolate and given to children in celebration of the Easter Bunny.
Another popular symbol of the festival is Easter egg. Egg is considered as a symbol for new life. So during the fasting period, Christians cave up the eating of egg, and resumes it on the Easter day. To add glory to the festival, eggs are dyed up and colored and decorated with other fancy items. Chocolate eggs are most popular and favorite among children. The chocolate eggs come in all sizes, from small bite size to the worlds biggest 8.32m huge egg made in Belgium. Hollow chocolate eggs often contain treats such as toys for the kids.
Similar chicks also represent new life and re-birth.
Lilies are used to decorate the holy cross. The white color of lily depicts the purity.
Being an important festival, lots of preparations are done in order to make it a grand one. The atmosphere turns joyous. Churches are lit up with candles and decorated with flowers. People visit each other and exchange cards, flowers and gifts especially chocolates in the shapes of bunnies and eggs. At certain places parties are also organized. The festival marks the beginning of new life symbolizing joy and happiness of the spring season.