I still go back to my childhood when I think of Easter – both the religious and non-religious aspects of it. It takes me to memories of the bright colors of Easter eggs and Easter baskets, the wonderful smells coming from Grandma’s kitchen and our own as food was prepared and cooked, as cakes – in the shape of lambs – were baked and decorated, and as visions of chocolate bunnies danced in the heads of my sisters and me.

Mass was early Sunday morning, dressed in our finest, which included new dresses, white gloves, ruffle-trimmed anklets, and hats with elastic bands that pinched a little.

It’s been a long time since most of these were a regular part of Easter weekend, except for going to Mass on Sunday morning, which never stopped being an important part of Easter – until last year, when the pandemic lockdown meant that going to church was replaced by attending Mass via livestream, watching the service from the family room sofa. And wondering how long it would be before it was safe to return to church.

I would never have imagined that a year later, we’d still be attending Mass on Easter Sunday the same way. Although our church has opened up and Mass is again being celebrated “the old-fashioned way,” the livestream service is still in place for those who don’t yet feel quite comfortable coming back. And because a return to regular Masses at full capacity would not allow for the social distancing recommended in order to fight the pandemic that is still with us more than a year later.

So this year, too, we’ll be attending Mass on Easter morning from the comfort of home. Later in the day, I’ll fix our traditional Easter dinner, but on a smaller scale than in days gone by when there were more people around the table than just my husband and me. I’ll spend some time, as I always do, in prayer and reflection, thinking about the significance and true meaning of the day.

And I’ll wonder, just for a moment, how – and where – we’ll be celebrating Easter next year.

For all those who celebrate the day, I wish you a safe, happy, and blessed Easter.

April 3, 2021
©Betty Liedtke, 2021

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