ENTER THE STORY
In a world of cynicism, pessimism, hostility, and discord, we root our hope in the power of the empty tomb! The power of Jesus has been unleashed in this world through His resurrection. The King has indeed taken His place at the right hand of God in Heaven. As a church, we invite you this Easter season to live in light of the empty tomb, to live knowing that the King reigns, and to praise Him in anticipation of His return! May we joyfully and confidently tell the world the story of this hope that is in us.
HISTORY & TRADITIONS
The celebration of the Easter season dates back to the earliest days of the Church. Easter is celebrated on the Sunday that follows the 14th day of the Jewish month, Nisan (the first Sunday following the first full moon after the spring equinox). Easter has a different date each year, typically somewhere between late March through April.
Traditionally, the Easter Vigil service began Saturday night at sundown and lasted until Sunday night at sundown, and centered on the Old Testament promise of deliverance. Just as the Israelites found freedom from their bondage in Egypt through the miraculous work of God on their behalf, Christians find freedom from sin and death in the finished work of Jesus–His death, burial, and resurrection. For many throughout history, the Easter Vigil began in the darkness of Good Friday, and culminated at the sun’s rise on Easter morning. Death was swallowed up in victory as the Light of the World, who was slain on our behalf, rose to life again.
The season that follows is known as Eastertide–seven weeks focused on reminding Christians of their identity in Christ. As such, historically they did not kneel for prayer during this period, but stood in recognition of their new identity found in the risen and exalted Christ. Christians also did not fast during this period, for they enjoyed a foretaste of the heavenly banquet promised through Christ, their Bridegroom.
POSTURES & SYMBOLS
Prayerful Posture: celebratory, joyous, hopeful
Colors: white, purple, gold
Symbols: empty tomb, sunrise, lilies, flowering cross
Flowers and Greenery: white lilies, hydrangeas
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