Families invited: Log on to virtual Easter basket blessing

Families invited: Log on to virtual Easter basket blessing

By Robin Mull
Director of Marketing

The blessing of the Easter basket on Holy Saturday is an Eastern European tradition that brings grandparents, parents and children together for one reason: to prepare for the resurrection of Jesus. 

“The traditional blessing of the basket is a way for us to say ‘thank you’ for what God has given us,” says Father Tyler J. Bandura, chaplain of Greensburg Central Catholic Junior-Senior High School.  “The blessing of the basket is also a way for parents to teach their children that all gifts come to us from God.”

Easter baskets come in all shapes, sizes and colors, but for many, the items inside are the same. For grandparents and parents, items may include decorated eggs, Easter bread, horseradish, kielbasa, ham, cheeses and other things that will be prepared for the family’s celebration of the Lord’s resurrection, each symbolizing a feast after the Lenten fast.

For children, baskets may contain chocolate crosses and bunnies and other sweet treats.

The basket is often covered with a specially embroidered cloth, symbolizing the burial shroud that covered the body of Jesus in the tomb, Father Bandura said.

“This covering also keeps the hungry hands of fasting Catholics from falling into temptation before the fast of Lent has ended,” he said.

Another custom is to include two nails tied together to form a cross, symbolizing the nails used at the crucifixion. The basket also traditionally contains a candle, representing Christ, the light of the world who on Easter destroys darkness. This candle can be used on the table for Easter dinner, Father Bandura said.

“The blessing of the basket reminds the children that we are celebrating an important day in our faith that gives us much reason to rejoice, and one of the ways we do that is by celebrating with foods and candies that we enjoy to eat,” he said.

Preparing the family Easter basket for a blessing is a wonderful time for parents and grandparents to share stories of this tradition and to share the teachings surrounding the resurrection of Jesus and the celebration of Easter.

Take a moment this Easter to continue a family tradition or to start a new one, and rejoice with your loved ones, recognizing what the Lord has given you.

Father Tyler J. Bandura will offer a virtual Easter basket blessing Saturday, April 11, at noon on the diocesan Facebook page. You can also view the blessing at www.TheAccentOnline.org or www.dioceseofgreensburg.org or perform your own blessing.


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