Instead of finding a sealed tomb, the women who had come at daybreak on that Sunday after Passover are surprised by an angel who announces astonishing news: “Jesus has been raised from the dead” (Matt. 28:7). The heavenly messenger invites the mourners to see the empty tomb and then go and tell the disciples that the Crucified One is alive! 
The season from Easter to Pentecost is also called the Great Fifty Days, a tradition inspired by the Jewish season of fifty days between Passover and Shavuot – the feast celebrating the giving of the Torah to Moses.

The liturgical color for this season is celebratory White. When the season ends on Pentecost Sunday, White is replaced with Red. This color reminds the congregation of fire – the symbol of the Holy Spirit. On Pentecost the Holy Spirit overpowered the barriers of language, culture and race. The first Sunday after Pentecost celebrates the Trinity, and the color again is White.

While the Christian celebration of Easter is closely linked to the Jewish Passover both in date and historical connections, most languages refer to the Christian festival with a word related to the term for “Passover” except for English. 

The English term “Easter” originated with the names of an ancient Goddess and God. The Venerable Bede, (672-735 CE.) a Christian scholar, first asserted in his book De Ratione Temporum that Easter was named after Eostre (a.k.a. Eastre). She was the Great Mother Goddess of the Saxon people in Northern Europe. Similarly, The Teutonic dawn goddess of fertility was known variously as Ostare, Ostern, Eostra, Eostre, Eostur, Eastra, and Eastur. Her name was derived from the ancient word for spring: “eastre. Similar goddesses were known by other names in ancient cultures around the Mediterranean, and were celebrated in the springtime.

Traditional practices around Easter with eggs, bunnies, and baby birds all derive from European legends and celebration of spring. Isn’t it ironic that in English the principal Christian festival is named for a pagan god /goddess?

Easter is the first Sunday after the first full moon after the Vernal Equinox, the first day of Spring.