The Easter Controversy Essay

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The Easter Controversy

Easter is the most important celebration for Christianity because it commemorates the Resurrection of Jesus Christ, a foundational notion upon which the faith is built. Accordingly, it is the principle feast and the high point of the ecclesiastical year, which has been an established tradition as old as Christianity. Easter has been universally observed since the middle of the second century. The original celebration generally consisted of a vigil with readings followed by a feast with the Eucharist. This was a time for rejoicing because the suffering, death, and resurrection of Jesus were seen as a saving unit. Christ’s transition from death to resurrection, which
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By the end of the second century, the majority of the Western churches had come to celebrate the Resurrection on the Sunday that followed the 14th day of the Jewish month Nisan. The Western Asiatic churches commemorated Jesus’ death rather than His resurrection and observed it on the 14th day of Nisan, whether that day fell on a Sunday or not. Therefore, what became known as the Easter Controversy was not an argument over the day of Jesus’ resurrection, but rather a disagreement over what day was most appropriate to commemorate it annually (Catholic Encyclopedia).

The Easter Controversy is the name given to the drawn out dispute in the early Church over the exact date for the celebration of Easter. As previously mentioned, this disagreement originated between the West and East at about the middle of the second century. Basically, what was under concern was whether the Easter celebration must be observed on a Sunday or if it should be celebrated on the 14th day of Nisan, regardless of the day on which this date may fall. This was the day on which the Jews celebrated Passover, which is why the Eastern churches like in Asia felt that since the two festivals were related, it was only fitting to celebrate Easter on that same day. Although these followers claimed to have received this practice from certain Apostles, specifically John and Philip, they were

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