Easter Without The Church
The celebration of Easter is a period that significantly speaks of a rebirth and new beginnings as it is noted to be the commemoration of the rising of Jesus Christ and how he defeated death.
A Christian observance, it is mostly celebrated spiritually in the church while the merriment visitation takes place in the home with assorted indulging munches.
But the reality that confronts us is the awkward possibility of Easter without the church. It is said, “home is where the heart is” and just as the home is the hallmark of every beings initiation to socialization, education and more, so is the case with the church as the domesticated home is a point of God’s dwelling presence before we then take it to the church as a structure.
Beginning with Palm Sunday ushering in the week leading to Easter, for the first time in the lives of many, Palm Sunday was celebrated in the domesticated home where the church first began. The loneliness of Jesus on Gethsemane transcends in meaning as the world celebrates in a collective state of “together apart.” This time with thumbs up to the internet, the church still lives on “virtually.”
Regardless of this, now with the structure in mind, it begets the question, “What is Easter without the church?” As many have lost navigation of the days, will the same spirit thrive even as we celebrate in our homes? Will it still feel like Easter with the presence of social distancing as a lot seems greatly distorted? It means the moment of gathering in one spirit and mind as a physical community to celebrate the resurrection of Christ is also on lockdown.
It also means the ritualistic habits fashioned towards the Easter celebration has come to an indefinite pause including the buying galore.
Since the terror of COVID-19 (coronavirus), the changing times have indisputably brought its challenges and lemonades are being made from lemons. This has sparked the #stayhomestaysafe trend having people indulge in cracked activities while others use this self-service era as a moment of reflection on what life is and should be.
It is without a doubt the immeasurable effect the coronavirus has had on the world. Lives have been affected as health workers make the frontline of this battle. The truth of the suffering and dying are made bare to the lens of the world.
Hence the Easter celebration will like other activities so far be virtualized as that is the recommended and acceptable means of communication.
Many are turning to a lot of things to survive, like taking solace in music to brighten their day while many too who want to take solace in the physical church cannot but can still take comfort in the hope that this special Easter will bring as the church communes through the media to thrive amidst this phase.
2020 is indeed a rollercoaster that has rocked our worlds in this respect. With the COVID-19, scare life almost seems like the dystopian novel 1984 with the government watching and paying keen attention instructing the citizens to stay at home. The isolation further enforcing elements of the Big Brother syndrome from the book, hence it feels like a worldwide big brother with “God” as the audience.
The human characteristics of a laid back attitude when in one’s comfort zones reduces the impact and effort made as compared to when one has to intentionally and physically make an appearance. The huge disparity of celebrating Easter beginning in the church and strictly at home is transparent accordingly obvious.
In Catherine (Kitty) O’Meara’s poem originally written in March 2020 and posted on her blog The Daily Round, she lists possibilities of the growing pandemic drawing an insight on what the coming days will look like as well as what it will bring as she says, “And people stayed home and read books and listened and rested and exercised and made art and played and learned new ways of being”.
Adaptation has never been farfetched for human beings and that is what will happen with the historic Easter without the church.