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What’s Easter really about?

DECCAN CHRONICLE. | CHRISTOPHER ISAAC
Published Mar 26, 2016, 12:00 am IST
Updated Mar 26, 2016, 12:01 am IST
With Easter coming up, Christians in the city tell us what the festival means to them.
A file photo of youngsters greet each other on the ocassion of Easter at St Mary’s Church, Secunderabad.
 A file photo of youngsters greet each other on the ocassion of Easter at St Mary’s Church, Secunderabad.

We’re on the cusp of the festival of Easter and Christians across the city are gearing up for a celebration that’s considered of even greater importance than Christmas.

And even though the various denominations of the religion have their own traditions and ways to celebrate the festival, it all comes down to his one day in the year when they all believe in one thing — that Jesus Christ rose from the dead on the third day after his death.

 

Former national cycling champion Maxwell Trevor puts it well: “We believe Jesus Christ rose on this day and his death and resurrection brought us salvation. He didn’t come here to start a religion, but he laid down his life for mankind to have a blessed and eternal life. I feel it’s much more significant that his birth.”

Some denominations, such as Catholics, also observe a 40-day period of fasting and abstinence before the festival, that’s known as Lent. “We all give up certain things, like non-vegetarian food and we also do charity as much as we can. For others, it’s a message of charity and peace that we try to spread through our observances as Christians. It’s a very spiritual and personal observances that we follow,” says Stephen Raveendra, DIG of police special forces the Greyhounds.

 

“We abstain from just about everything. Also, because we’re public figures we also have to attend a lot of events. It almost seems that all the invites come in only during the Lenten season,” Telangana State principal secretary Raymond Peter says with a laugh, but adds, “It’s also to put yourself to the test and control your desires. So it strengthens us. But I’ve been doing this since I was in Class IV, so it’s been sacrosanct for all of us in the family ever since.”

The day of Easter itself is a celebration that’s a celebration with family and others from the community. As Maxwell puts it: “As with any festival, the entire family gets together. Personally, we usually celebrate it at my mothers’ place and we have meal together and essentially just have a nice time together.”

 

And for Andhra Pradesh MLA Phillip C. Tocher, it’s a time to finally celebrate a win! He says, “Lent was completely about prayer and fasting and penance for us. But being a nominated MLA, I strictly stuck to the traditions and did not throw any party after being nominated. I’ll only be doing that later this month.”

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