Easter for Orthodox Christians

 

A detail from our Paschal table last night

There’s usually some mention of Orthodox Easter on Ricochet, but this year I didn’t find one, or maybe missed it. So let me say it this year, in case it hasn’t been said yet.

To those who celebrated Sunday; to every believing Christian: Christ is Risen!

Published in Religion & Philosophy
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  1. MWD B612 "Dawg" Member
    MWD B612 "Dawg"
    @danok1

    Χριστός Ανέστη!

     

    • #1
  2. merumsal Member
    merumsal
    @merumsal

    MWD B612 "Dawg" (View Comment):

    Χριστός Ανέστη!

     

    Αληθώς ανέστη ο Κύριος!

    • #2
  3. Kozak Member
    Kozak
    @Kozak

    We visited our soon to be in-laws for Easter yesterday….

    • #3
  4. Seawriter Contributor
    Seawriter
    @Seawriter

    Truly He has risen.

    • #4
  5. MWD B612 "Dawg" Member
    MWD B612 "Dawg"
    @danok1

    Kozak (View Comment):

    We visited our soon to be in-laws for Easter yesterday….

    Ah, the lamb on a spit. Haven’t done that since we moved to NC, but always got together with the in-laws and extended family on Pascha when we lived in NY.

    (I had to ask them to cut some meat off the lamb while it was at the medium-rare stage. They all seemed to prefer their lamb Old Testament style.)

    • #5
  6. colleenb Member
    colleenb
    @colleenb

    Kozak (View Comment):

    We visited our soon to be in-laws for Easter yesterday….

    Looks like a great piece of lamb (I’m assuming).

    • #6
  7. colleenb Member
    colleenb
    @colleenb

    Indeed He is risen!

    • #7
  8. merumsal Member
    merumsal
    @merumsal

    Kozak (View Comment):

    We visited our soon to be in-laws for Easter yesterday….

    @Kozak, the lamb looks delicious!  I’ve been eyeing one of those spit setups for a long time.

    • #8
  9. merumsal Member
    merumsal
    @merumsal

    MWD B612 "Dawg" (View Comment):

    Kozak (View Comment):

    We visited our soon to be in-laws for Easter yesterday….

    Ah, the lamb on a spit. Haven’t done that since we moved to NC, but always got together with the in-laws and extended family on Pascha when we lived in NY.

    (I had to ask them to cut some meat off the lamb while it was at the medium-rare stage. They all seemed to prefer their lamb Old Testament style.)

    Medium-well for me, regarding lamb.  Just a little rosiness.  In my experience, lamb cooked on a spit is very forgiving and doesn’t go dry or get tough when roasted to that stage, and it pleases both the squeamish and the gastronomes!

    • #9
  10. Front Seat Cat Member
    Front Seat Cat
    @FrontSeatCat

    MWD B612 "Dawg" (View Comment):

    Χριστός Ανέστη!

     

    That was outstanding – can you tell me a little bit about yourself @merumsel ? 

    • #10
  11. Front Seat Cat Member
    Front Seat Cat
    @FrontSeatCat

    Thank you for this post.  While the country and world is in one turmoil after another, we have a blessed Easter within the Orthodox community.  I am Ukrainian / Polish descent so I appreciate your sharing this.  The red eggs in your post as an example.  I used to work with a fellow from Romania who used to order the special dye for these for Easter.  He came to this country as an immigrant. He learned the language and a trade in AC / heat refrigeration and bought his own home. He never asked for a penny from anyone.  He learned how to be successful. (this was during Obama and he warned me about the wolf in sheep’s clothing that he saw).  He said he still owned property in Romania. His mom was the only relative and she received state retirement which was a couple hundred a month. He said you stood in line for healthcare and paid cash to the corrupt system to go ahead of the line in state-run healthcare.  He said the government was corrupt and he had no desire to go back.

    He was respectful, hard-working and grateful to be in America.

     

    • #11
  12. Jon Gabriel, Ed. Admin
    Jon Gabriel, Ed.
    @jon

    This was my first Easter as an Orthodox Christian and enjoyed an amazing midnight service Saturday/Sunday. To everyone at Ricochet…

    Christ is risen!

    Christos anesti! (Greek)

    Khristos voskrese! (Russian)

    Kristus nousi kuolleista! (Finnish)

    • #12
  13. MWD B612 "Dawg" Member
    MWD B612 "Dawg"
    @danok1

    merumsal (View Comment):

    MWD B612 "Dawg" (View Comment):

    Kozak (View Comment):

    We visited our soon to be in-laws for Easter yesterday….

    Ah, the lamb on a spit. Haven’t done that since we moved to NC, but always got together with the in-laws and extended family on Pascha when we lived in NY.

    (I had to ask them to cut some meat off the lamb while it was at the medium-rare stage. They all seemed to prefer their lamb Old Testament style.)

    Medium-well for me, regarding lamb. Just a little rosiness. In my experience, lamb cooked on a spit is very forgiving and doesn’t go dry or get tough when roasted to that stage, and it pleases both the squeamish and the gastronomes!

    To each his own. 

    @Kozak, did they have tsoureki? One of my favorites of the Pascha feast. These are the ones I made for our celebration:

    • #13
  14. Jon Gabriel, Ed. Admin
    Jon Gabriel, Ed.
    @jon

    My pictures aren’t very good, so here’s one from our church.

    • #14
  15. Gary McVey Contributor
    Gary McVey
    @GaryMcVey

    Jon Gabriel, Ed. (View Comment):

    My pictures aren’t very good, so here’s one from our church.

    A wonderful picture, photographically as well as spiritually.

    I miss another Ricochet witness to Orthodoxy, @skipSul and greatly regret that he’s not around any more, apparently burned out by the endless acrimony on the Member Feed. His posts on the Orthodox faith still hold up very well, as do Jon’s. 

    • #15
  16. colleenb Member
    colleenb
    @colleenb

    Jon Gabriel, Ed. (View Comment):

    This was my first Easter as an Orthodox Christian and enjoyed an amazing midnight service Saturday/Sunday. To everyone at Ricochet…

    Christ is risen!

    Christos anesti! (Greek)

    Khristos voskrese! (Russian)

    Kristus nousi kuolleista! (Finnish)

    Indeed He is risen.

    Alithos anesti.

    • #16
  17. Samuel Block Support
    Samuel Block
    @SamuelBlock

    I suppose I should know the answer to this… but why is there a separate, Orthodox Easter? 

    Is this one of those kooky European calendar issues? 

    • #17
  18. Clifford A. Brown Contributor
    Clifford A. Brown
    @CliffordBrown

    Samuel Block (View Comment):

    I suppose I should know the answer to this… but why is there a separate, Orthodox Easter?

    Is this one of those kooky European calendar issues?

    A post-Schism Roman Catholic pontiff, Pope Gregory XIII, imposed the calendar we use in our day-to-day business. The Orthodox Church stuck to the Julian calendar for purposes of calculating the date of Easter.

    • #18
  19. merumsal Member
    merumsal
    @merumsal

    Front Seat Cat (View Comment):

    MWD B612 "Dawg" (View Comment):

    Χριστός Ανέστη!

     

    That was outstanding – can you tell me a little bit about yourself @ merumsel ?

    Thank you, @frontseatcat.  I have always been wary of revealing too much on the internet.  I’ve never participated in any social media, unless one counts Ricochet as a social networking service.  Even so, I’ve said almost nothing about myself on Ricochet for 11 years.  I will say only that I am the son of Greek immigrants who came to America in the 1950s, and found a country that rewarded hard-working, honest, God-fearing people with abundance they never dreamed of.  That includes the freedom to speak and worship in agreement with one’s beliefs.

    I know many immigrants (not only from Greece) like the ones you described in your other comment.  They see America changing for the worse, becoming very like the countries they escaped from.  This worries me, too.  The freedoms my parents found here are under threat, by the people who originally welcomed my parents, who also told them that along with their new-found freedoms come responsibilities.  My tastes are very European, but I like the America my parents found.  On balance, I like it better than any other country.

    • #19
  20. merumsal Member
    merumsal
    @merumsal

    Jon Gabriel, Ed. (View Comment):

    This was my first Easter as an Orthodox Christian and enjoyed an amazing midnight service Saturday/Sunday. To everyone at Ricochet…

    Christ is risen!

    Christos anesti! (Greek)

    Khristos voskrese! (Russian)

    Kristus nousi kuolleista! (Finnish)

    I’m stunned.  I mean, really floored.  Why?  Because I’d read enough of your writing, heard you on so many podcast episodes.  I would never have guessed you to have any inclination to the Orthodox Church (absolutely NO judgment in that statement).  So much for my intuitive skills.

    I missed your series on your conversion, as I took a big break from Ricochet for the past year—for pretty much the same reason @garymcvey points out above, mentioning @skipsul.  So, I pop back into the site to give a little greeting, and I get popped in the face with the news of you attending the Resurrection Service.  I’m glad you enjoyed it—it is the absolute acme of the year.

    For what it’s worth, I think this is marvellous news.

    • #20
  21. merumsal Member
    merumsal
    @merumsal

    MWD B612 "Dawg" (View Comment):

    merumsal (View Comment):

    MWD B612 "Dawg" (View Comment):

    Kozak (View Comment):

    @ Kozak, did they have tsoureki? One of my favorites of the Pascha feast. These are the ones I made for our celebration:

    @danok1, your tsourekia are beautiful.  And I agree, the Pascha feast is incomplete without tsoureki.  Here is my effort for this year:

    Start with five pounds of flour . . .

    (Hopefully these will make up for my lamb barbarism above.)

    • #21
  22. merumsal Member
    merumsal
    @merumsal

    Clifford A. Brown (View Comment):

    Samuel Block (View Comment):

    I suppose I should know the answer to this… but why is there a separate, Orthodox Easter?

    Is this one of those kooky European calendar issues?

    A post-Schism Roman Catholic pontiff, Pope Gregory XIII, imposed the calendar we use in our day-to-day business. The Orthodox Church stuck to the Julian calendar for purposes of calculating the date of Easter.

    I could not say it more clearly or succinctly.

    • #22
  23. Seawriter Contributor
    Seawriter
    @Seawriter

    merumsal (View Comment):

    Clifford A. Brown (View Comment):

    Samuel Block (View Comment):

    I suppose I should know the answer to this… but why is there a separate, Orthodox Easter?

    Is this one of those kooky European calendar issues?

    A post-Schism Roman Catholic pontiff, Pope Gregory XIII, imposed the calendar we use in our day-to-day business. The Orthodox Church stuck to the Julian calendar for purposes of calculating the date of Easter.

    I could not say it more clearly or succinctly.

    Except that explanation is incorrect. Some Orthodox churches use the Gregorian calendar, and the reason the Western and Eastern churches usually celebrate Easter on different days is not related to that. It is related to the Paschal moon calculation.

    In the Western Church Easter is observed on the first Sunday after the first full moon following the Vernal Equinox.

    In the Eastern Church Easter is observed on the first full moon following the Vernal Equinox after the Jewish Passover. Eastern Easter cannot occur before Passover since Christ entered Jerusalem to celebrate Passover. 

    • #23
  24. JoelB Member
    JoelB
    @JoelB

    colleenb (View Comment):

    Jon Gabriel, Ed. (View Comment):

    This was my first Easter as an Orthodox Christian and enjoyed an amazing midnight service Saturday/Sunday. To everyone at Ricochet…

    Christ is risen!

    Christos anesti! (Greek)

    Khristos voskrese! (Russian)

    Kristus nousi kuolleista! (Finnish)

    Indeed He is risen.

    Alithos anesti.

    The words Khristos voskrese bring back memories of a good friend who came to the USA with his family as a religious refugee during the Gorbachev era. He was not Orthodox, but Pentecostal. Peter taught me these words, but I had forgotten them until now. He passed while still in his 40s – too soon for my liking, but because of the truth of these words I am assured we will meet again.

    • #24
  25. MWD B612 "Dawg" Member
    MWD B612 "Dawg"
    @danok1

    merumsal (View Comment):

    MWD B612 "Dawg" (View Comment):

    merumsal (View Comment):

    MWD B612 "Dawg" (View Comment):

    Kozak (View Comment):

    @ Kozak, did they have tsoureki? One of my favorites of the Pascha feast. These are the ones I made for our celebration:

    @ danok1, your tsourekia are beautiful. And I agree, the Pascha feast is incomplete without tsoureki. Here is my effort for this year:

     

    Start with five pounds of flour . . .

    (Hopefully these will make up for my lamb barbarism above.)

    Looking good! SWMBO like her tsoureki a bit “under baked,” so mine aren’t as dark as yours. And it does make up for your “lamb barbarism.” :)

    • #25
  26. Front Seat Cat Member
    Front Seat Cat
    @FrontSeatCat

    merumsal (View Comment):

    Jon Gabriel, Ed. (View Comment):

    This was my first Easter as an Orthodox Christian and enjoyed an amazing midnight service Saturday/Sunday. To everyone at Ricochet…

    Christ is risen!

    Christos anesti! (Greek)

    Khristos voskrese! (Russian)

    Kristus nousi kuolleista! (Finnish)

    I’m stunned. I mean, really floored. Why? Because I’d read enough of your writing, heard you on so many podcast episodes. I would never have guessed you to have any inclination to the Orthodox Church (absolutely NO judgment in that statement). So much for my intuitive skills.

    I missed your series on your conversion, as I took a big break from Ricochet for the past year—for pretty much the same reason @ garymcvey points out above, mentioning @ skipsul. So, I pop back into the site to give a little greeting, and I get popped in the face with the news of you attending the Resurrection Service. I’m glad you enjoyed it—it is the absolute acme of the year.

    For what it’s worth, I think this is marvellous news.

    I read all the Jon Gabriel installments of his conversion journey and they are all excellent. So beautiful.

    • #26
  27. Fredösphere Member
    Fredösphere
    @Fredosphere

    Truly he is risen!

    I attended the midnight liturgy at the local Greek Orthodox church this year and will be posting my reactions soon.

     

    • #27
  28. Seawriter Contributor
    Seawriter
    @Seawriter

    Fredösphere (View Comment):

    Truly he is risen!

    I attended the midnight liturgy at the local Greek Orthodox church this year and will be posting my reactions soon.

    St. Nicholas in Ann Arbor? Or another one?

    • #28
  29. merumsal Member
    merumsal
    @merumsal

    Seawriter (View Comment):

    merumsal (View Comment):

    Clifford A. Brown (View Comment):

    Samuel Block (View Comment):

    I suppose I should know the answer to this… but why is there a separate, Orthodox Easter?

    Is this one of those kooky European calendar issues?

    A post-Schism Roman Catholic pontiff, Pope Gregory XIII, imposed the calendar we use in our day-to-day business. The Orthodox Church stuck to the Julian calendar for purposes of calculating the date of Easter.

    I could not say it more clearly or succinctly.

    Except that explanation is incorrect. Some Orthodox churches use the Gregorian calendar, and the reason the Western and Eastern churches usually celebrate Easter on different days is not related to that. It is related to the Paschal moon calculation.

    In the Western Church Easter is observed on the first Sunday after the first full moon following the Vernal Equinox.

    In the Eastern Church Easter is observed on the first full moon following the Vernal Equinox after the Jewish Passover. Eastern Easter cannot occur before Passover since Christ entered Jerusalem to celebrate Passover.

    With respect, because I am not an expert on the topic, I still believe that @cliffordbrown’s explanation is correct, because the Julian Calendar does seem to play the dominant role in the difference between Easter dates.  The few people I know who are knowledgeable on this matter all say that the vast majority of Orthodox jurisdictions calculate the date of Easter (and therefore all the associated moveable feasts) using the Julian calendar, even if they are on the Gregorian calendar for the rest of the year.  So, for example, the Greek Orthodox Church in America celebrates Christmas on Gregorian December 25, but Easter—this year—on May 2, together with the Serbian Church, which consistently follows the Julian calendar all year round.  One of the people I spoke with directed me to the Wikipedia articles on the Computus and the List of dates for Easter, which he says are accurate. The articles also state that virtually all the Orthodox calcualte Easter using the Julian calendar.

    The difference in Easter dates seems to hinge on the Ecclesiastical Equinox, which is always on March 21st, for both the Eastern and Western churches.  Julian March 21 now falls on Gregorian April 3, which is why Orthodox Easter never occurs before (Gregorian) April 4, and Western Easter never occurs before (Gregorian) March 22.  This article from Orthodox Christian Studies Center of Fordham University goes into the matter.

    Again, I am not an expert in this topic; I’m just repeating what I’ve been told by people I believe know what they’re talking about.  If I’ve gotten this completely wrong I apologize, and I welcome being corrected.  But I won’t comment any more and further embarrass myself on this matter which I don’t fully grasp.

    • #29
  30. merumsal Member
    merumsal
    @merumsal

    Fredösphere (View Comment):

    Truly he is risen!

    I attended the midnight liturgy at the local Greek Orthodox church this year and will be posting my reactions soon.

     

    He is risen indeed! [UK-style, for a change ;-) ]

    Do tell.  But I do hope your reactions are favorable. . . .

    • #30