Saturday, March 15, 2008
FROM LOCAL REPORTS
If Easter seems early to you this year, you're probably not alone. It's so early in fact that St. Patrick's Day falls in Holy Week.
Easter, the Christian celebration of Christ's resurrection, is what is known as a moveable feast. Its timing is not fixed on a particular calendar date but is determined according to a fairly complex set of rules.
In Western Christianity, which includes the Roman Catholic Church and Protestant churches, Easter always falls on a Sunday between March 22 and April 25 inclusively. It falls on the first Sunday following the first ecclesiastical full moon that occurs on or after March 21, which is fixed as a vernal equinox.
The Western observance of Easter will not arrive this early again until 2106.
For Eastern churches, including Muskegon's Annunciation Greek Orthodox Church, Easter's date is determined by a different formula, based on older tables from the Julian calendar rather than the Gregorian calendar used by Western churches.
The Eastern Orthodox church also applies the formula so that Easter always falls after Passover. That is because the crucifixion and resurrection of Christ took place after he entered Jerusalem to celebrate Passover, according to gospel accounts.
This year, Passover, which is the Jewish commemoration of the Exodus from Egypt, falls on April 19. Passover falls on the 14th day of Nissan, the first month of the Jewish year.
The Eastern churches' observance of Easter this year falls on April 27.
Dana Milbank Slams Obama's Assault on the Press - *There are various reasons you might not care about the Obama administration’s spying on journalist James Rosen and labeling him a “co-conspirator and/or...
3 hours ago