I’ve seen a little fuss here and there on social media about the directive not to move the date of Easter. I don’t have a problem with that order.
One factor is moving Easter off Northern Hemisphere Spring. Rome and other places on half the Earth see the importance. But for Australia, South America, and parts of Africa, Easter is a Fall festival. Once human beings move off this planet, and experience astronomical or seasonal years of varying lengths and conditions, European sensibilities about Easter will reside as a fact of history, not practice.
Just as the virus has struck different nations at different times and intensities, we might expect the all-clear signal to be given at different times. The problem with a post-COVID-19 Easter is the lack of unity across Christendom.
Obviously, not all Christians follow the directive from Rome. Pope Francis may have more ecumenical cred than other recent popes, but when one factors in non-denominational believers across continents, it does seem futile to set Easter 2020 some Sunday this summer, or heaven forbid, in November.
While I get the desire to “do” Easter when we get back, I largely agree that the date can’t change. But I would observe that regardless of where the calendar is when churches repopulate, it will feel like the best Easter in decades. You can’t legislate against that.