Roses are red
Violets are blue
You celebrate Easter
But not if you’re a Jew!
It’s Easter Sunday, and families rejoice, enjoying each other’s company munching on candy. The smell of vinegar lingers in the air from yesterday’s adventure of transforming regular eggs into brightly pigmented symbols. Colored dye is seemingly permanently embedded into the hands of many enthusiastic, Easter-celebrating individuals. Bright-eyed children are scurrying through the grass in their patent leather shoes and Easter dresses in search of small tokens left by the Easter bunny. Jellybeans are spilling out of plastic eggs.
That same weekend, a lesser-known, but equally important, religious holiday was in full swing too: Passover. Because Christianity is so ubiquitous in the town of Bethel, the Jewish holiday Passover is sometimes overlooked.
Passover is a holiday that commemorates the narrative of the Exodus, a time when the ancient Israelites were freed from slavery in Egypt.
Although the two holidays are celebrated for different reasons by separate religions, both holidays bring friends and families together with the glue of tradition, growth, and food. Both holidays are a time of bonding and sharing, along with a renewed sense of respect and appreciation for one another. So, both holidays aren’t so different, after all.
The world is one. We are all fighting for the same successes: happiness, love, peace, safety, and pride. In order to prevent separation, why not bring everybody together and combine the two holidays? Eastover!
The Easter Bunny can deliver matzo, flattened unleavened bread that is symbolic of the holiday, and we can all leave our doors open for Elijah AND the Easter Bunny! The traditional Passover seder can consist of the typical symbolic foods: maror, (bitter herbs), charoses, (paste made of fruits and nuts), karpas, (vegetable dipped in salt water), zeroah, (bone of a lamb shank to symbolize the lamb that was sacrificed), wine, and lastly, beitzah! Beitzah is a roasted egg, as a symbol of life and the perpetuation of existence. The egg part ties Easter into it!
Sophomore Alana Amaru, a fellow Jewish 10th grader states that, “It’s a good and creative idea, but there’s a reason that there are two different holidays. Judaism and Christianity are very separate religions and I feel that if my family was to combine the celebrations, it would just feel wrong and as if I was betraying who I really was. However, if a family was half-and-half, and celebrated both holidays, it would make sense and be much more convenient to combine them.”
The religious aspects will be perpetually different. This is a fact that dates back to the time of which Christianity was created. Despite the differences in religious beliefs, many individuals feel that holidays in general are about celebrating and togetherness.
No matter what holiday you celebrate, remember to honor your loved ones and enjoy each other’s company. L’Chaim!