Forget About the Easter Bunny

by | Mar 10, 2024 | 2024, Musings | 0 comments

A recent edition of the magazine, Christianity Today carried an article about the history of the Easter Bunny. According to that article, the first mention of that furry hare was in 692 with the church council in Constantinople attempting to ensure that religious practices were consistent across Christendom, prohibited eating dairy and eggs during Lent. Since boiled eggs kept longer, they became part of Easter celebrations.

In 1530, Titian painted a picture with the Virgin Mary placing her hand on a white rabbit. In 1539, a Dutch satire was critiquing the “Romish religion” and listed decorating eggs as one of the ridiculous practices of the Catholic Church. In 1725, Louis XIV had a chocolate egg made to celebrate the end of Lent.

In 1819, the mother of Queen Victoria moved from Germany to England and took with her the tradition of Easter egg hunts. By 1875, Cadbury Chocolate in England, began to manufacture eggs for Easter. In 1878, President Hayes invited children to roll Easter eggs at the White House.

In 1950, a department store in Pennsylvania set up a photo booth where children could have a picture taken with the Easter Bunny. And in 1951, the Easter bunny song, “Here Comes Peter Cottontail” sung by Gene Autry hit No. 3 on the Billboard charts.

It is easy to see how the tradition came about, and it is alive and well in our society today. Right now, baskets of toys and chocolate treats abound in all our grocery stores. And many families love the custom of hiding eggs all over the yard or house.

But let’s take some time this week to make some other plans for Easter. Let’s make sure that our family and friends forget about the bunny and instead focus on the Cross and the empty tomb.

On Good Friday, let’s gather and retell the account of Christ’s arrest, trials and crucifixion (see John 18 and 19).

Jesus made seven statements from the cross, maybe you could list those statements and use them for a meaningful discussion of His substitutionary death.

And then on Sunday, read through John 20 and think about how various men and women responded to the risen Savior. God is still speaking to His children. What does His resurrection mean to you this year?

There’s nothing wrong with a mouth full of Cadbury milk chocolate (it is my favorite candy!). But the bunny tradition is such a shallow practice. Let’s let Easter celebrations this year revolve around our precious Savior… crucified, buried and risen again for us!



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