Easter 2020 and Good Friday in Canada

Good Friday is on April 10 in 2020 and Easter Monday is on April 13.

Good Friday is the Friday before Easter Sunday and it is a federal statutory holiday across Canada.

It's a complicated but precise formula that determines the day Easter Sunday is celebrated: It is the first Sunday after the first full moon in spring (after March 21st) which can occur as early March 22 and as late as April 25.

Good Friday marks the death of Jesus Christ according to the Christian religion. It is a fundamental part of Christianity along with the resurrection of Jesus on Easter Sunday. Many agree that this is a more important holiday than Christmas since it is the ultimate proof that Jesus is the son of God because he came back from death.

In provinces where Family Day, Islander Day and Louis Riel Day are not observed Good Friday is the first stat holiday after New Years Day.

In Quebec employers can choose to give the day off either on Good Friday or Easter Monday.

Bunnies & eggs

Easter is a highly commercialized holiday when tons of chocolate is sold in the form of easter eggs and easter bunnies. The Easter Bunny brings a basket full of goodies to children for Easter. Sometimes the gifts are hidden so children have to look for them - this is called an egghunt.

Rabbits and eggs are symbols of fertility and were first mentioned in German literature as early as the 1600s.

Easter traditons

There are several traditions for this time of the year. Egg painting is very popular and easy to do. Egg paint kits can be purchased in stores but you can also dye hard boiled eggs using a jar of beet juice! To give eggs extra shine you can rub them with fat - bacon is perfect for this. You laugh now but once you try it you'll see how well this works!

Petting zoos are popular around Easter, too, where kids get a chance to pet and feed bunnies and other animals. Some people even buy pet bunnies but you should only do this if you are ready to truly commit to having a pet - no impulse shopping please.

Family get-togethers are also part of the Easter weekend. After Christmas and Thanksgiving the Easter weekend meal is the third largest meal nationwide.

Lent

In the Catholic religion there are 40 days of fasting preceding Easter. The lent starts on Ash Wednesday and ends on holy Saturday. It is observed to imitate the 40-day fast of Jesus before his death. Generally only one meal a day is allowed and meals shouldn't include meat or fish. Exceptions apply for children and the elderly. The day after the lent period ends people eat a rich breakfast - break the fast - which consists of eggs, ham, bread and fish followed by games throughout the day.

 

Do you want perfume? A tradition of "sprinkling" in Hungary

A unique Easter tradition in Hungary is the sprinkling of women with parfume or cologne on Easter Sunday.

Men and older boys get up early in the morning and visit girls and women in their families (they are supposed to arrive when women are still sleeping) and sometimes even walk from house to house to visit strangers in the neighbourhood and sprinkle scented water (parfume) on their heads.

According to tradition this keeps women beautiful until next Easter. They usually recite a "sprinkling poem" and ask for permission to sprinkle the ladies. Some fun-loving (and brave) men sometimes use a bucket of cold water instead of perfume ;-)

In return for the sprinkling women give them hand painted eggs, home-made cake, a shot of liquor and even money.



The Origins of Easter

This short article was sent to us by Lawrence - thank you!

The month of April was dedicated to Eastre the Anglo-Saxon goddess of offspring and fertility, her symbol being the rabbit. Eggs and rabbits symbolize birth and fertility in many cultures, with eggs decorated in bright colors and given away as gifts. In 325 A.D., at the Council of Nicaea, Emperor Constantine issued the Easter Rule stating that Easter must be celebrated on a Sunday between the dates of March 22 and April 25. Nowadays, many Christians, in place of Easter, celebrate Resurrection Sunday to commemorate that Christ is risen from the dead and He sits at the right hand of the Father interceding for us.

Share your holiday story, idea or comments

What games do you play at Easter? How do you celebrate? What do you eat? Send in your Easter-related comments below:

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Recent comments
Posted by Grace:

It is not only Roman Catholics who observe Lent (the period from Ash Wednesday Good Friday). Other Christian denominations such as Anglican, Eastern Orthodox, Lutheran, etc. also observe it. .

Posted by Jon Paul:

I favor we celebrate Dec 25 as Jesus' birthday, as I agree with Gandhi: Even if Jesus never existed, what is offered to us in his name is so great that justifies us to celebrate him. But I do not support easter, as it is the day when Jesus, the man died. And diety of Jesus will come down sooner that that of God. But Jesus as per Gandhi definition, shoul stay for wver. Forget the huge numbers of Christians. It can change quickly. And the tendency is the number of atheists rises, believers plummets. Still, I am in favor to let people celebrate whoever they want as their diety,

Posted by Pedro Gomez-Carranza:

Germans are well known for their inventions that include the Easter bunny for the Holy Week as well as Santa Claus for Christmas; it reflects their need to extend their influence to the most important, and religious events celebrated by humans

Posted by Anonymous:

The headline is "Share your holiday story, idea or comments...What games do you play at Easter? How do you celebrate? What do you eat? Interesting how the comments have so quickly turned from stories reflecting on joy and happiness on this celebrated occasion to the bashing of government, gov't employees, religious beliefs, children and their ipads, lazy parents, etc. Says volumes on the state of humanity in the world today...or better said, lack of humanity.

Posted by Lisa J:

RAJ. S-Canada is a country based on Christianity- not sure how this can offend anyone with their own beliefs, many if not all countries in the world have a base of religion (or a large population there of) and I don't think when a secular day is celebrated anyone should be offend in any faith, when the Jewish Faith celebrates Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur, or the Islamic faith celebrate Eid Al-Fitr and Eid Al-Adha. Eid Al-Fitr, of Christianity celebrates Christmas or Easter. People need to be understanding and tolerant, a country should not have to remove its traditions or history for fear of offending. No one is forced to live here nor participate in the celebrations, so Raj you have a choice, enjoy your day, join in or leave, I'm sure there is a place in the world that will accept you with your views and beliefs with out having to change. I wish you peace & happiness, I hope you will find understanding and tolerance for all.

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