What is Easter?

What is Easter?

Easter is a Christian holiday that celebrates the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead. It is the most important Christian festival, and it is observed on the first Sunday following the first full moon after the vernal equinox, usually between March 22 and April 25.

Easter is preceded by Lent, a 40-day period of fasting, repentance, and spiritual discipline that begins on Ash Wednesday and ends on Holy Saturday. The week leading up to Easter is called Holy Week, and it includes the commemoration of Jesus' triumphal entry into Jerusalem on Palm Sunday, the Last Supper on Maundy Thursday, the crucifixion on Good Friday, and the resurrection on Easter Sunday.

Easter is celebrated by Christians around the world with special church services, family gatherings, and traditional foods such as hot cross buns and Easter eggs. The egg is a symbol of new life, and the tradition of decorating and giving eggs at Easter dates back to ancient times. The Easter Bunny is also a popular symbol of the holiday, representing fertility and new life.

How to Celebrate Easter:

The ways to celebrate Easter can vary depending on cultural and religious traditions. Here are some general ideas for celebrating Easter:

  1. Attend a church service: Easter is a religious holiday, and attending a church service is a great way to celebrate and reflect on its meaning.

  2. Decorate your home: You can decorate your home with Easter-themed decorations, such as colorful eggs, Easter bunnies, and flowers.

  3. Prepare a special meal: Easter is often celebrated with a special meal shared with family and friends. Some popular Easter dishes include roast lamb, ham, and hot cross buns.

  4. Participate in an Easter egg hunt: This is a fun activity for children and adults alike. You can hide Easter eggs around your house or yard, and the person who finds the most eggs can win a prize.

  5. Give Easter gifts: Giving Easter gifts is a way to show your love and appreciation for your family and friends. Some popular Easter gifts include chocolates, flowers, and Easter-themed toys.

  6. Spend time with loved ones: Easter is a time for family and friends to come together and celebrate. Spend time with your loved ones, have meaningful conversations, and create happy memories.

Remember that the most important aspect of Easter is its spiritual significance, so take some time to reflect on its meaning and importance in your life.

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Easter at Maui’s Historic Churches

a vintage photo of a house

Maui has an amazing array of churches many of which are of historical registry and significance. They can be found island wide. These churches were at the forefront of the Hawaiian cultures evolution from a caste based society to a christian based community. Maui’s unique history can be told through the stories of the island historic churches. Here is a listing of churches that have Easter services as well as deep historic roots dating back over 100 years!

Keawala’i Church in Makena – 5300 Makena Rd, Kihei, HI 96753

One of Maui’s most beautiful oceanside churches Keawala’i Church is well known as a great church for weddings.

Waiola Church Lahaina 535 Waine’e St Lahaina

This is where Christianity began for the island of Maui. The church held its first worship service on the beach fronting Lahaina in 1823. Queen Keopuolani, said to be the highest ranking Ali’i (Royalty) in the kingdom at the time (higher even than her husband Kamehameha the Great) became impressed with the Missionaries message. From Oahu, she traveled with missionaries to deliver the “good word” to the people of Maui in may of 1823. She fell ill shortly after that and died in September of that year. She and other Ali’i are buried in the Royal Tomb, located in the church cemetery.

a small clock tower in front of a house

Holy Ghost Church – Old Kula Highway

This Roman Catholic church sits on the slopes of Haleakala in Kula. Said to have been serving the Portuguese Catholic community since 1875, Holy Ghost Church has a unique to Hawaii octagonal designed that was completed in 1895. In 1983 the church was placed on the Hawaii Register of Historic Places.

As well as Easter Sunrise services the church is well known for it’s annual free Holy Ghost Feast. Local Portuguese have been celebrating this feast since arriving in the 1880s to work in the sugarcane industry and has been held ever since in early June.

Kaahumanu Church – Wailuku 103 S High St

Another church that was established by Maui’s first missionaries, Ka’ahumanu Church was established in 1832. The New England style church was built on the property of the Royal Compound of Maui’s last independent King, Kahekili. Attended by Queen Ka’ahumanu (Kamehameha’s most favored wife who was born in Hana) she requested a sanctuary be built in her name. Her request was completed by Edward Bailey in 1876 with the building of the present day sanctuary building.

a clock tower on top of a lush green field

Church services here are a blend of Hawaiian and English with mele (music) and pule (prayer)

Makawao Union Church – 1445 Baldwin Ave, Makawao, HI 96768

This beautiful stone church was founded in 1861, and it’s original New England style wood frame structure was dedicated in 1889. The wood frame church was razed in 1916 and the new building, designed architect Charles William Dickey, was erected using reinforced concrete with a natural basalt lava rock veneer. The roof was covered in Vermont slate, and the stained glass windows were reused from the old building. The adjacent Paia Community House was built in 1914, and it’s large auditorium and stage was used for operettas, plays, concerts, silent movies, and dances.

Easter morning at Makawao Union Church starts with a congregational breakfast followed by a worship service and annual Easter egg Hunt for the Keiki (children). All are welcome to be part of the festivities on Easter day.

a clock tower on top of a grass covered field