Easter is joyful, but only one reason for it

Published 12:06 pm Friday, March 25, 2016

It’s interesting what a person thinks about when a holiday approaches.

We essentially have two major religious holidays on the American calendar — Christmas and Easter, and while both holidays are hallmarks of the Christian faith, Christ’s birth and his crucifixion and resurrection from the dead, it’s rare that we sit back and recall the religious services we attend to celebrate those momentous occasions. What we recall are the family gatherings. On Christmas, the gifts and delicious cookies and meals that are part of the season. On Easter, warm weather (or that year the deluge forced the annual Easter egg hunt indoors) and the overabundance of chocolate that encourages even the most weight-conscious person to overdose on chocolate rabbits and eggs.

Growing up, Easter was a special time. Spring was in the air and there were always two egg hunts, one inside and another outside. My mother, who has always had a knack for arranging things, always had a nest of goodies sitting on the living room coffee table for the family. As usual, the chocolate tasting began before breakfast with the usual warnings about upset stomachs and other maladies mixed with the push to get ready for Mass.

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In South Louisiana, whether you attended Catholic or public school, you had Holy Thursday and Good Friday off. As a child, we welcomed the spring holidays (we didn’t get spring break like kids do now), and were always outside doing something. When I was a senior in high school I spent those two days in Lafayette, La., participating with my high school track team at the Southwestern Relays at the University of Southwestern Louisiana (now University of Louisiana Lafayette).

When I was in college and later as an adult, the joy of Easter slipped away, until I became a parent.

Having a child can renew you when it comes to holidays, and I always enjoyed watching our daughter hunt for Easter Eggs or playing with her cousins at family picnics on the holiday.

Our daughter is grown, but at Easter she brings the joy back through the clown ministry she has at her church, and it’s a reminder to remember Easter’s true meaning.

It’s not the chocolate, it’s not the joy of spring or the beauty of the blossoms that begin to show when the weather is warmer.

It’s the fact that a man of love and peace was so willing to give himself and die for the sins of man to help me and others live a better, spiritual life, and have the knowledge that he will one day return.

Like Christmas, Jesus is the reason for this season, and it’s at this time of year that God’s beauty is most on display through the regeneration of life. Let’s remember that.

Happy Easter.


About John Surratt

John Surratt is a graduate of Louisiana State University with a degree in general studies. He has worked as an editor, reporter and photographer for newspapers in Louisiana, Mississippi and Alabama. He has been a member of The Vicksburg Post staff since 2011 and covers city government. He and his wife attend St. Paul Catholic Church and he is a member of the Port City Kiwanis Club.

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