SIR– I heard the other day the Archbishop of Canterbury is to have discussions with the Pope on the subject of introducing a fixed Easter to replace the existing moveable feast. On the surface it sounds like a good idea, the last Sunday of April, say; better for arranging school term times and such like.
But, then I heard something which set the alarm bells ringing; the retail industry would be all for it. It’s obvious, the later Easter is the more money people have to spend. Heaven Forbid! Easter could become almost as commercialised as Christmas. Lent, like the season of Advent would be eclipsed, Easter would start early.
About a fortnight before Ash Wednesday we would not be able to turn on the radio or television without being bombarded with commercials for Easter eggs, chocolate Easter bunnies, Easter bonnets, joints of spring lamb, special Easter discounts on three-piece suites – open Good Friday 7am till midnight – or why not take a long weekend break? Easter in Disneyland. We’d be told what to cook, what to eat, what to drink, what to wear and so on ad nauseam.
To the Christian, the resurrection of Jesus Christ is the most important event in history of the world.
Our faith is founded on it. It would be appalling if it was seen merely as an opportunity to boost the sales figures.
To the liberal secularist, the shift in emphasis from the religious to the material would be welcome, and a religious spring festival would delight the atheists.
I wonder what the reaction would be if the commercial interests suggested to the Muslims they alter the dates and times of Ramadan to suit the smooth running of the major supermarkets. I would imagine the chief ayatollah would blow the loudest raspberry ever heard.
With that, I sincerely hope that Easter remains a moveable feast.