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Catholic Activity: Easter Sunday Activities in the Home

Easter Sunday is the feast of all feasts. We need to be careful not to fall back into old habits or sins, and to not make this is a secular celebration. There still should be the spiritual focus of the day. Here are some suggestions on how to keep that focus.

DIRECTIONS

Today everything in word and thought and act sings the glad tidings of the Resurrection. The triumphant and joyous spirit of the liturgy carries over into the home. The fullness of joy and charity, song and laughter, new clothes, release from the austerity of Lent, Alleluias — "Praise the Lord!" — nothing that is good is restrained on this day.

Yet our very enthusiasm requires a thought of caution. There is a temptation for almost a secular rejoicing, in which Easter is viewed as the end of sacrifices and the day of resuming worldly habits. Of course, we can experience relief from the end of fasting and the cessation from the special acts of self-denial and from the rigor of the extra good works and learning we undertook. We return to things good in themselves — food, relaxation, entertainment — but we return better and fuller persons. We are not retreating to be enslaved, but rather, we are enjoying and offering up things good in themselves. We enjoy them as a material symbol of the spiritual rejoicing of all creation on the day of resurrection.

So the home is filled with love and gaiety and enthusiasm. The Easter meal is celebrated with finest style and with an ease and leisure that mark this as a unique day. The Easter candle burns in its holder at the center of the table, the symbol of Christ the Light of the world and the Light of this household, too. If possible, some of the food was blessed by the priest after Mass; where this is not the custom, the father of the family will have blessed the food with the new Easter water.

The family will find its joy as much as possible in those actions which show fraternal charity — in visiting with relatives and friends, including the shut-ins and handicapped. But there is no pressure to do anything in particular. It is a "free day.

This is the day which the Lord has made; let us rejoice and be glad! (Psalm 117: 24)

Activity Source: Lent and Holy Week in the Home by Emerson and Arlene Hynes, The Liturgical Press, Collegeville, Minnesota, 1977

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