It might not be quite the rush of Christmas shopping, but this week, there likely have been a lot of people worldwide participating in egg hunts, scrambling to find last-minute gifts and making dinner plans to celebrate Easter, the most important occasion of the year on the Christian calendar.
With the big day coming up Sunday, here’s a synopsis of both the historical elements of Easter that people might not know about, and the modern financial windfall Easter is expected to be in 2023.
Why is Easter celebrated on different days each year?
This year, Easter will be celebrated April 9. Last year, it was on April 17.
In 2024, it will be on March 31 before taking place on April 20 in 2025.
Easter is celebrated between March 22 and April 25 each year, which seems like a big variance.
So, why is that the case?
Easter is traditionally the first Sunday after the first full moon following the ecclesiastical spring equinox (March 21), which is also known as the Paschal Full Moon.
According to the Bible, the death and resurrection of Jesus happened at the time of the Jewish Passover, which was celebrated on the first full moon after the spring equinox.
The Paschal Full Moon falls on a recurring sequence of 19 dates, ranging from March 21 to April 18.
If the Pachal Full Moon falls on a Sunday, Easter will be celebrated on the following Sunday, thus, why Easter is anywhere between March 22 and April 25.
Why is a bunny associated with Easter?
This is a bit of a mystery, since there’s no mention of bunnies in the Bible, but there is one historical theory to answer this question.
According to History.com, German immigrants who settled in Pennsylvania brought over egg-laying rabbits or hares who would lay colored eggs in nests.
Rabbits are also a symbol of new life that fit well into the resurrection theme of Easter.
Why are eggs associated with Easter?
The egg is an ancient symbol of new life and rebirth, which the resurrection of Jesus symbolizes.
Many like to dye eggs red to symbolize the blood of Jesus during the crucifixion.
It’s no wonder there are so many Easter egg hunts held worldwide, and there’s egg-shaped candy everywhere, which brings us to our next question.
How much candy is sold around Easter?
A lot. In fact, there is more candy sold around Easter than any other date on the calendar each year, except for Halloween. Americans reportedly consume about 16 million jelly beans each Easter, while roughly $3.3 billion is anticipated to be spent on all types of candy in 2023.
How much money overall is expected to be spent on Easter?
Consumers plan to spend an average of $192.01 this year on Easter-related items, or a collective total of $24 billion, according to the National Retail Federation.
The biggest purchase for consumers will be food at $7.3 billion, followed clothing ($4 billion) for those who love to get new outfits every Easter, and gifts ($3.8 billion). Estimates for other purchases are $1.8 billion for flowers, $1.7 billion for decorations and $1.1 billion for greeting cards.