One Easter, Not Two

Vatican Insider reports that Holy Land Catholics will join their Orthodox sisters and brothers in observing Easter on 5 May 2013.

Is the Catholic/Orthodox separation on Easter a big deal? About half the time the dates are separated by a week. One-fourth of the time, as in 2013, it’s about a month. Otherwise we’re aligned 25% of the time. How did things get out of whack on such a basic Christian thing?

The difference between the Gregorian calendar reform of 1582, and how Easter is placed as the Sunday after the first full moon of Spring.

Why now and not earlier? Who knows? Vatican II endorsed the idea of a single celebration of Easter across Christendom. The last bishops’ synod endorsed the idea, repeatedly. Obviously, we’d need to get all of the Reformation Churches with the program, too. A lot of them took a century or two to adopt Pope Gregory XIII’s initiative. Britain and its colonies came aboard in 1752. Here’s a good trivia question: which was the last US state to align with the other states in the Gregorian reform? Hint: it was before its own statehood.

Here is the 2010 USCCB statement on a shared Easter.

Hopefully this development will cut down on fistfights and other unseemly behavior.




About catholicsensibility

Todd lives in Minnesota, serving a Catholic parish as a lay minister.
This entry was posted in Church News, ecumenism, Liturgy. Bookmark the permalink.

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