As we approach Easter Weekend we asked our Christian Societies to share their Easter experiences with us…
Here’s who we’ve heard from so far:
Maisy Neale - Christian Union
Maisy is the Secretary of BCU’s Christian Union. You can join or find out how to contact the society here.
Jacinta Finigan - Multi-Faith Society
Jacinta is the Christianity Officer of BCUSU’s Multi-Faith Society, one of our Protecred societies which is free to join and unites the many faiths we have at BCU to some common goals. Jacinta is also looking to launch a Catholic Society, are you interested in joining the committee? See what posts are available here.
When do you celebrate Easter?
“Although Easter Day is the main day for Easter, I celebrate and think about Easter and what it means for me as a Christian a lot in the weeks surrounding it! The story of Easter is also the core of my faith as a Christian, so it is something in some respects we celebrate all year round - just with less chocolate!”
“In the Christian religion, we start our Easter celebrations from Easter Sunday (Sunday 4th April 2021) and continue to celebrate it for the next 50 days, until Pentecost Sunday (Sunday 23rd May 2021).”
What does Easter mean to you?
“Easter means more to me than just lots of chocolate and hot cross buns (although, I can never resist a good Creme Egg!). To me, Easter is a time to celebrate Jesus dying on the cross and then rising from the dead three days later - He took on everything we have ever done that was wrong or bad (what Christian's call 'sin') and I believe that the act of Jesus rising from the dead means for me that I can always be forgiven, have a relationship with God, and have eternal life!”
"For me, Easter is a very beautiful, symbolic, and joyous occasion where we celebrate the Resurrection of Jesus Christ after spending 40 days (known as Lent or the Lenten period) of prayer, fasting and almsgiving.”
How do you observe the Holy Week?
“Although the days in Holy Week represent different things, for me personally, I don't observe the individual days a huge amount, but see the week as a time to focus on the Easter story as a whole. Within Church, we acknowledge the individual significance of Palm Sunday, Good Friday and then Easter Sunday (there are a few more days in Holy Week as well!) but all within the context of the whole message of Easter - forgiveness and new life!”
“So after having spent the previous few weeks in prayer, fasting and almsgiving, we remember in particular Holy Week, a scared time of the year where we follow the Passion and Death of Christ leading up to Easter Sunday.
“As a Catholic, I follow the Easter Triduum which is the three days before Easter starting on Maunday Thursday (The Last Supper of Our Lord before He was arrested), Good Friday (the day of the crucifixion and death of Our Lord - at 3pm exactly – fasting is expected especially on this day) and Holy Saturday (the vigil where we keep watch for the expectant rising of Christ).”
Are there any traditions or rituals that you follow during Easter?
“When it's not COVID, I tend to spend quite a lot of time during Easter at different church celebrations, but personally, I do not have many traditions or rituals!”
“For Catholics, Easter Sunday begins by attending the Easter Vigil Mass on the Saturday in the late evening. We can then break our 40 day of fasting and penance which can include breaking into a chocolate egg which is symbolic of Christ’s Resurrection and New Life!! We also have a simnel cake which has 11 balls of marzipan which symbolise the remaining 11 disciples of Christ who were loyal to Him.”
Do COVID restrictions affect the way you will approach Easter?
“COVID restrictions have meant all my Easter celebrations are happening online, at different Zoom church events, which is very different to meeting inside a building, or in the town centre to give out chocolate which is how I usually spend my Easter! I'm also not able to spend Easter Day with my family, but I'll be celebrating via the internet!”
“Have no fear! Whilst COVID restrictions make things just a little trickier, we can still celebrate Easter in our own homes and with our families! We can also “attend” as many virtual Easter services as we like choosing from a variety all over the world! We can also go out for social distanced meet ups with our groups of 6 now too! There are many ways to celebrate Easter whilst keeping safe!”
How has your society helped you practice your faith throughout your time at BCU?
“Through the Christian Union, I have met so many great people who share the same faith as me! It has allowed me to find a support network to discuss life as a Christian at uni with and kept me motivated in my faith even during a global pandemic!”
“Whilst I only joined this society not too long ago and in the middle of a pandemic, that hasn’t stopped me getting involved as and when the opportunity presents itself! I have one year left so I hope to make the most of engaging students in this society before I leave!”