When it comes to holidays, youngsters might need some help when it comes to Easter.
Never mind the rabbit. If your kids were old enough and you tried to relate how the Easter Bunny puts goodies and gifts in a basket full of fake grass, they might think you’d chucked the plastic foliage and got into the medical grade real stuff.
Whoever thought all this up is likely collecting massive royalties. Getting Peeps, Reese’s Peanut Butter chocolate eggs, behemoth chocolate bunnies, brightly-colored (hopefully) hard-boiled eggs in a basket delivered by a scary-looking rabbit is a stretch for everyone but the most gullible.
I never figured how rabbits and chickens got together and became the cornerstones for a multi-billion-dollar industry. I love a good story, as long as it’s not too complicated.
I always figured a fat guy in a red suit traveling the world riding a sleigh pulled by flying reindeer, dropping gifts at every house made perfect sense. And after writing that last paragraph, I’d better hush and think better of ever being a front man for Santa and his elves.
Stepping back, while there is a magic associated with Christmas, you have to dig a little deeper to appreciate the true meaning of Easter.
Years ago, while listening to a sermon. the enormity of this Sunday’s celebration finally hit home: Without Easter, there is no Christianity.
Mull that over as you unwrap a marshmallow egg.
The way this priest explained it, Jesus rising from the dead wasn’t a given when it happened. Non-believers chose to speculate the body was stolen in order to perpetuate a myth.
That’s why, to me, believing in the Resurrection is the most important concept in history.
Before you scratch your head raw thinking your columnist is getting all preachy, chew on this: Other holiday symbols are fine, but pale in comparison to the miracle of Easter.
I understand there are those who choose to not believe, and I mean truly believe, the concept of a risen Christ. And I’m not one to write on what Easter truly means, because it will mean so many different things to each of us, but, to me, it all boils down to faith.
In no way am I saying “my way or the highway” when it comes to all this. I respect all religions that are important to so many. And I hope what I have written won’t get me canceled.
I have come to the realization, having written columns about so many subjects, this is the one that I have always wanted to write. Not to be dramatic, but I’ve been wondering if my ability to write from the heart, write what I believe, will ride off into the sunset.
In other words, I’ve celebrated a lot more birthdays than I will have in the future.
Allan Kaufman, my friend for 36 years, is Jewish. He knows I’m Catholic. When the boys were younger, he would send Hannukah gifts. It was a gesture that meant so much then and still does. The gifts were a perfect way to illustrate the importance of embracing religious beliefs that weren’t ours.
It’s funny how things become important once you are eligible for Medicare.
And I promise, I’ll get back to helping you laugh, cry and think in future columns. I am eternally grateful that you allow me to occupy, with each column, a small part of your weekend.
On Sunday at sunrise, we have the privilege of celebrating Easter in the grotto on our church grounds. The service starts at 6 a.m.
That’s way before the Easter Bunny will have had his eggs for breakfast.
Mike Tasos’ column is published every other Sunday. Comments can be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org. He is also on Facebook.