When is Easter 2016

When is Easter Celebrated?

Easter is one of the Holiest festivals of Christians, generally celebrating the Resurrection of Jesus after his Crucifixion. Like the source of the festival, exact date for Easter Sunday too has been a matter of controversy. Easter is a moveable feast, in the Gregorian or Julian calendar it won’t fall on the same day every year. Easter used to be celebrated on different days of the week by early Christians.

In 325 AD, the Council of Nicaea convened by Emperor Constantine issued the Easter Rule which said that the first Sunday that occurs after the first full moon on or after the vernal equinox Easter shall be commemorated. Nevertheless the "full moon" in the rule is the ecclesiastical full moon and it does not always fall on the same date as the astronomical full moon. The ecclesiastical "vernal equinox" always falls on March 21. Hence Easter can be commemorated as early as on March 22 or as late as on April 25.

Traditionally Eastertide endured for forty days from Easter Day i.e. till Ascension Day; things are dissimilar in the present times. Easter officially lasts for fifty days until Pentecost in the present day.

Easter is always commemorated on the Sunday instantly following the Paschal Full Moon in Western Christianity. Easter, a spring time festival in Christian countries is a religious holiday, commemorated with great gaudery and demonstration. Although mainly Easter celebrates the resurrection of Jesus Christ, the son of God, there are several traditions and legends that are related with it.

Easter also marks the end of Lent season, a period of time for fasting, prayer and penance. Easter celebrations starts days before; the last week of Lent commemorates Palm Sunday, which signifies the successful entrance to Jerusalem of Lord Jesus. On this day the Jerusalem crowd laid palm leaves at Jesus’ feet, thereby the day got the name as Palm Sunday. Holy Thursday or Maundy Thursday adverts to the Last Supper, which was held in the evening before the Crucifixion. Good Friday celebrates the anniversary of the Crucifixion, the day when Christ was crucified and died on the cross.

Although the religious observances of the festival comply the Christian church, due to regional influences the basic contours of the Easter commemoration may change. The Easter date i.e. on March 27th, in 2016 not only stand for western calendar (Catholic and Protestant Churches), but also for the Eastern Orthodox Church. Amazingly there are some years in the century, when both the groups’ Easter dates completely match doubling up the grandeur and magnificence!