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Eggs & Rabbits the Easter Connection - 09/04/2023

Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,

Happy Easter! I was struck this year that the media seems to have increased its association of bunnies and eggs to the Easter celebrations. Biblical Scholar Dr Dan McClellan shed an interesting light on this which intrigued me. He reports that in mediaeval Christianity rabbits became a significant symbol because of the European brown hare’s ability to become pregnant with a second litter, before giving birth to the first. There was the perception that they were capable of parthenogenesis (virgin birth) and so they became associated with the Virgin Mary, usually represented as white, as a symbol of purity and virginity. Eggs became associated with Easter because they were gifts that were given just before the start of the Lenten fast as they kept much longer than other food that was prohibited during lent. It was a traditional means of breaking the Lenten fast on Easter Sunday. So, gifts of eggs decorated in colours red (for Jesus’ blood), yellow (for rebirth) and green (for joy) were given to church leaders and exchanged between the elite. These two images represent Jesus’ life from His immaculate conception through to His resurrection, which secures our eternal salvation. What a great visual depiction of our faith!

Christ is Risen. Alleluia!

Rev’d Pete Farquhar

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