In my middle-class world growing up in the U.S., my mother and grandparents made sure that Easter was a big deal around our home. There was a big Easter basket full of all the great things a child loves that today are considered toxic to the body… chocolate eggs, hollow bunny, plastic colored straw, cellophane around a colorful straw basket. It was great! Then there was the church service where my mom dressed me and my two sisters alike with white patten leather shoes with the pop-off bows. Remember? And the hats… we can’t forget the hats. Our Easter bonnets were our pride and joy.
This month, we celebrated Easter at the Campus and Peace House with our closest friends and employees. It was a real tradition we plan on having every year. While we didn’t have the Easter baskets or the white patten leather shoes or Easter bonnets, we had a true Jamaican feast consisting of chicken foot soup, rice and peas, cabbage salad with no dressing, and wonderful chicken and pork.
Everyone came dressed in their Easter clothes while we watched the Passion of Christ in Italian. Not sure why English didn’t happen, but it didn’t seem to matter with the guys. They liked it anyway.
Since the Peace House was a little warm that day, we put up tents in the front yard with chairs. Friends moved out of the house to their table of choice and began to enjoy themselves off the clock. Babies, moms, dads, distant families, and grandparents seemed to forget all the challenges from the days before and the days to come to think about the why Easter was so peaceful. I think it was because of the constant unchanging love of Christ for all of us, believers or not. When we intentionally focus on the facts about Easter, there is a certain settling in all of us that causes us to rest, knowing that God’s got the whole world in His hands. And just like that simple song we all learned as children even in Jamaica, we finished the day with simple fun games like Go Fish, Crazy Eights and Pick Up Sticks.
It was a great time! No one will miss out on our Easter next year. Come join us! With simple childlike faith, we all can be part of a great experience as we celebrate Resurrection Sunday.