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Easter in Rosarito

Easter & Holy Week in Mexico

The Holy Week

The Holy Week

The Holy Week is the annual commemoration of the Passion, Death and Resurrection of Jesus of Nazareth, or, equally, to commemorate his last days. As such it is a day of intense and devout renewal of faith in every Christian denomination and is especially evident in the predominantly Catholic communities here in Mexico.

It begins with Palm Sunday and ends on Resurrection Sunday (Easter), even though the celebration really begins on the Friday before Easter, or Good Friday, as it is more commonly known.

The Holy Week (Semana Santa) is preceded by Lent, forty days of reflection and fasting, beginning with Ash Wednesday and going through the Holy Thursday, the crucifixion of Jesus on Good Friday, and the resurrection celebrated at dawn on Easter Sunday.

During Holy Week, you will see many processions and reenactments all over the world that represent the Passion of Christ, leading up to his death and resurrection.

Days Off From Work

In these days so important to many of us, whether your motive is religious or just to take off and enjoy time with your family or friends, we invite you to visit us in Playas de Rosarito (Rosarito Beach) in Baja California, México.

And if you come to visit us in Rosarito, we invite you to stay at the Rosarito Inn. Much more than a hotel, Rosarito Inn has full 1-4 bedroom condominiums in two beach front properties in the heart of Rosarito that will give you the opportunity to enjoy this beach side community and enjoy the restaurants that serve delicious meals, fish, horseback riding, beach events and more. Just 20 minutes from the U.S. border.

The Two Easters

Christian Easter

Easter is a spring festival that celebrates the central event of the Christian faith: the resurrection of Christ three days after his death by crucifixion. Easter is the oldest Christian holiday and the most important day of the church year. All the Christian movable feasts and the entire liturgical year of worship are arranged around Easter.

Easter Sunday is preceded by the season of Lent, a 40-day period of fasting and repentance culminating in Holy Week, and followed by a 50-day Easter Season that stretches from Easter to Pentecost.

Resurrection Sunday. The day that Holy Week comes to an end and the coming to pass of the Christian Easter

Holy Week starts off on Palm Sunday, the Sunday before Easter.

Thursday commemorates the Last Supper of Jesus, getting its name from the Latin translation of Jesus' saying that evening, "A new commandment I give to you" Mandatum novum do vobis. It is marked by foot washing and the blessing of the oils. But in various parts of the world, it has other traditions as well. The German word "to mourn" (grun) is very similar to the word for green (grÜn). So in Austria, Hungary, and much of Germany, today is GrÜndonnerstag: a day to eat spinach and green salad. This is not the only reason for eating greens: Passover is celebrated with karpas (a green vegetable, usually parsley) and bitter herbs. In old England, men used to shave their beards on Maundy Thursday, as this was a time to cleanse the body as well as the soul to prepare for Easter.

Friday, of course, is Good Friday. (The Orthodox call it Great Friday, but they're not celebrating Holy week until next week.) A strange day, Good Friday. Christians commemorate Jesus' death and call it "Good." It used to be that Good Friday was observed even more than Easter, but for a while Protestants ignored it. Oh and by the way, hot cross buns are a Christianized pagan custom, too—from the Eostre celebrations. On one Good Friday, a nineteenth-century missionary to Bermuda had difficulty explaining the ascension of Jesus, so he launched a kite with an image of Jesus on it and cut the string. Kite-flying is now a Bermuda Good Friday tradition.

Sunday, Easter Sunday, is the day of Jesus' resurrection from the grave.

History of Easter and the Easter Controversy

There is evidence that Christians originally celebrated the resurrection of Christ every Sunday, with observances such as Scripture readings, psalms, the Eucharist, and a prohibition against kneeling in prayer. At some point in the first two centuries, however, it became customary to celebrate the resurrection specially on one day each year. Many of the religious observances of this celebration were taken from the Jewish Passover.

The specific day on which the resurrection should be celebrated became a major point of contention within the church. First, should it be on Jewish Passover no matter on what day that falls, or should it always fall on a Sunday? It seems Christians in Asia took the former position, while those everywhere else insisted on the latter. The eminent church fathers Irenaeus and Polycarp were among the Asiatic Christians, and they claimed the authority of St. John the Apostle for their position. Nevertheless, the church majority officially decided that Easter should always be celebrated on a Sunday. Eusebius of Caesarea, our only source on this topic, reports the affair as follows:

A question of no small importance arose at that time [c. 190 AD]. The dioceses of all Asia, as from an older tradition, held that the fourteenth day of the moon, on which day the Jews were commanded to sacrifice the lamb, should always be observed as the feast of the life-giving pasch, contending that the fast ought to end on that day, whatever day of the week it might happen to be. However it was not the custom of the churches in the rest of the world to end it at this point, as they observed the practice, which from Apostolic tradition has prevailed to the present time, of terminating the fast on no other day than on that of the Resurrection of our Savior. Synods and assemblies of bishops were held on this account, and all with one consent through mutual correspondence drew up an ecclesiastical decree that the mystery of the Resurrection of the Lord should be celebrated on no other day but the Sunday and that we should observe the close of the paschal fast on that day only.

With this issue resolved, the next problem was to determine which Sunday to celebrate the resurrection. The Christians in Syria and Mesopotamia held their festival on the Sunday after the Jewish Passover (which itself varied a great deal), but those in Alexandria and other regions held it on the first Sunday after the spring equinox, without regard to the Passover.

This second issue was decided at the Council of Nicea in 325, which decreed that Easter should be celebrated by all on the same Sunday, which Sunday shall be the first following the paschal moon (and the paschal moon must not precede the spring equinox), and that a particular church should determine the date of Easter and communicate it throughout the empire (probably Alexandria, with their skill in astronomical calculations).

The policy was adopted throughout the empire, but Rome adopted an 84-year lunar cycle for determining the date, whereas Alexandria used a 19-year cycle. Use of these different "paschal cycles" persists to this day and contributes to the disparity between the eastern and western dates of Easter.

Name of Easter

The origins of the word "Easter" are not certain, but probably derive from Estre, an Anglo-Saxon goddess of spring. The German word Ostern has the same derivation, but most other languages follow the Greek term used by the early Christians: pascha, from the Hebrew pesach (Passover).

In Latin, Easter is Festa Paschalia (plural because it is a seven-day feast), which became the basis for the French Pâques, the Italian Pasqua, and the Spanish Pascua. Also related are the Scottish Pask, the Dutch Paschen, the Danish Paaske, and the Swedish Pask.

Religious Observances on Easter

Common elements found in most Roman Catholic, Eastern Orthodox, and Protestant religious Easter celebrations include baptisms, the Eucharist, feasting, and greetings of "Christ is risen!" and "He is risen indeed!"

In Roman Catholicism, and some Lutheran and Anglican churches, Easter is celebrated with a vigil that consists of "the blessing of the new fire (a practice introduced during the early Middle Ages); the lighting of the paschal candle; a service of lessons, called the prophecies; followed by the blessing of the font and baptisms and then the mass of Easter. “The traditional customs of the Catholic church are described in detail in the online Catholic Encyclopedia.

In Orthodox churches, the vigil service is preceded by a procession outside the church. When the procession leaves the church, there are no lights on. The procession conducts a symbolic fruitless search for Christ's body, then joyfully announces, "Christ is risen!" When the procession returns to the church, hundreds of candles and lamps are lit to symbolize the splendor of Christ's resurrection, and the Easter Eucharist is taken.

Protestant observances also include baptism and the Eucharist (or Lord's Supper), and often a sunrise service (to commemorate Mary Magdalene's arrival at the empty tomb "early, while it was still dark") and special hymns and songs.

Popular Easter Customs

Over the centuries, these religious observances have been supplemented by popular customs, many of were incorporated from springtime fertility celebrations of European and Middle Eastern pagan religion. Rabbits and eggs, for example, are widely-used pagan symbols for fertility. Christians view the Easter eggs as symbols of joy and celebration (as they were forbidden during the fast of Lent) and of new life and resurrection. A common custom is to hide brightly colored eggs for children to find.

And while we're at it, the Easter Bunny comes from these pagan rites of spring as well, but more from pagan Germany than pagan Britain. Eighteenth-century German settlers brought "Oschter Haws" (never knew he had a name, did you?) to America, where Pennsylvania Dutch settlers prepared nests for him in the garden or barn. On Easter Eve, the rabbit laid his colored eggs in the nests in payment. In Germany, old Oschter lays red eggs on Maundy Thursday. If anyone knows why children in an agrarian society would believe a rabbit lays eggs, please tell us or a historian near you. We're all dying to know.

Another Bermuda fact: it's where Easter lilies came from. They were brought to America from the island in the 1880s (and, for once, not a Christianized pagan symbol). They're now associated with Easter because it grows from a bulb that is "buried" and "reborn." So this Easter, consider the lilies. And what they represent.

Pesach: The Jewish Easter

Pesach begins on the 15th day of the Jewish month of Nissan. It is the first of the three major festivals with both historical and agricultural significance (the other two are Shavu’ot and Sukkot). Agriculturally, it represents the beginning of the harvest season in Israel, but little attention is paid to this aspect of the holiday.

The name “Pesach” comes from the Hebrew root Pei-Samekh-Cheit Pei-Samekh-Cheit (in Hebrew), meaning to pass through, to pass over, to exempt or to spare. It refers to the fact that G-d “passed over” the houses of the Jews when he was slaying the firstborn of Egypt. In English, the holiday is known as Passover. “Pesach” is also the name of the sacrificial offering (a lamb) that was made in the Temple on this holiday. The holiday is also referred to as Chag he-Aviv Chag he-Aviv (in Hebrew), (the Spring Festival), Chag ha-Matzot Chag ha-Matzot (in Hebrew), (the Festival of Matzahs), and Z’man Cheiruteinu Z’man Cheiruteinu (in Hebrew), (the Time of Our Freedom) (again, all with those Scottish “ch”s).

Probably the most significant observance related to Pesach involves the removal of chametz (leaven; sounds like “hum it’s” with that Scottish “ch”) from our homes. This commemorates the fact that the Jews leaving Egypt were in a hurry, and did not have time to let their bread rise. It is also a symbolic way of removing the “puffiness” (arrogance, pride) from our souls.

The grain product we eat during Pesach is called matzah. Matzah is unleavened bread, made simply from flour and water and cooked very quickly. This is the bread that the Jews made for their flight from Egypt. We have come up with many inventive ways to use matzah; it is available in a variety of textures for cooking: matzah flour (finely ground for cakes and cookies), matzah meal (coarsely ground, used as a bread crumb substitute), matzah farfel (little chunks, a noodle or bread cube substitute), and full-sized matzahs (about 10 inches square, a bread substitute).

What are some Jewish Passover customs that connect to the Christian Passover?

The Jewish Passover was celebrated by early Jewish-Christians and their festival was known as "Pasch", which was taken from the Hebrew word "Pesach", meaning "to pass over". Some Jewish Passover customs that connect to the Christian Passover include: (1) The offering of the wave-sheaf. According to certain Christian theology, Jesus was presented to the Father (G-d) as the wave-sheaf offering on the Sunday after the Sabbath during the Passover week when the wave-sheaf was traditionally offered. (2) Another Jewish Passover custom that relates the Jewish Passover to the Christian Passover is the custom of sacrificing the paschal lamb for the Jewish Passover holiday.

Originally, The Apostles maintained the celebration of Easter on the same day in the Jewish calendar that the Jews sacrificed their paschal lamb which was on the 14th day of the Hebrew month of Nissan, for the start of the Jewish Passover holiday on the 15th day of Nissan. The reason is that they maintained that Jesus was crucified or "sacrificed" on the 14th day of Nissan just as the paschal lamb of the Jewish people was sacrificed on the same day. In Christian theology, all Christians acknowledge that as the Apostle John said, Jesus was that antitypical Passover Lamb which takes away the sins of the world (John 1:29).

For Christians, this calendric connection was meant to show the historical continuity between the Old Testament and The New Testament, although all the Gospel accounts show that Jesus celebrated the Jewish Passover the night before he was crucified. In I Corinthians 5:7 in the New Testament, it says that "Jesus was our Passover lamb", since in addition to the word "Passover" meaning "to pass over", the Jewish people also referred to the paschal lamb as the "Passover", which derived from an ancient pre-Passover of Egypt festival practiced by Middle Eastern peoples of sacrificing a lamb to mark the arrival of Springtime, known as the "Passover". So Jesus's "sacrifice" of his life was given a symbolic connection with the sacrifice of the paschal lamb for the Jewish Passover festival. (3) Still another Jewish Passover custom that influenced Jesus and as a result Christianity, are what Christians today celebrate as the Eucharist, Communion, and Lord's Supper. These customs were instituted by Jesus at his last Passover. (4) Yet another of many Jewish Passover customs that were adopted and theologically adapted by Christians include Jesus's substitution of the symbolism of the lamb and bitter herbs of the Jewish Passover Seder meal which symbolized the Hebrews' being saved from the death of the first-born son in each Hebrew family in Egypt and the hardships of slavery in Egypt, respectively, with bread and wine, where the bread symbolized the body of Jesus and the wine symbolized the blood of Jesus, which represented Jesus as the "lamb of God" (referenced in: John 1:29; Acts 8:32; I Peter 1:19; and Revelations 5:6) and hence synonymous with but replacing the paschal lamb of the Hebrews.

The reason for these substitutions according to Christian interpretations was that "just as you did it in memory of your salvation from slavery and death by the blood of the Passover lamb in Egypt; now you are to eat and drink in memory of your salvation from slavery to sin and death through the blood of the Lamb of God to eternal life". (5) Jewish Passover customs in the area of observing the eating of unleavened bread for 7 (or 8) days are connected by Christians with verses in the New Testament, specifically in John 6. In John 6, it states that Jesus calls himself the "Bread of Life" and equates that with eternal life. According to some Christian interpretations, since Christians are redeemed by Jesus's death but only saved by his resurrected life, the Unleavened Bread represents Jesus's resurrection.

So the Passover and the Days of Unleavened Bread have both the death and Resurrection in it. To cite a source for this explanation, Paul says in I Corinthians 15 that if Jesus is not resurrected, Christians are still in their sins. These are but some of the many connections between the ancient Jewish Passover and the Christological meanings adopted and adapted for the Lord's Supper in Christianity. The earliest Christians continued to keep observing their adapted Jewish Passover on the 14th day of Nissan, which was then renamed the Christian Passover. Moreover, the earliest Christians kept all the Jewish festivals, not just Passover. Eventually, the observance of the Christian Passover on the 14th day of Nissan was replaced by the Roman Church at the Council of Nicea in 325 C.E. with the observance of Easter on the first Sunday following the first full moon after the vernal equinox. The name "Easter" came from an old Anglo-Saxon term "Eastre" (also: "Ostera" or "Eostre"), which was the Anglo-Saxon Goddess of Springtime of which a pagan festival for marking the beginning of springtime I.E. the vernal equinox was celebrated by the Anglo-Saxons.

For more information on Pesach, visit

Rosarito Inn is the place you will want to stay every time you visit Mexico. More than a typical Rosarito hotel, Rosarito Inn has fully furnished, 1,2,3, & 4 bedrooms condominium suites, on the beach in the heart of town. You will love the hotel type convenience where every suite is uniquely decorated and you get to choose your own directly from our website by browsing over 152 suites.

Rosarito Inn has a bilingual staff that will cater to their guests and help with arrangements in making your stay a most memorable getaway, with specials that may include a bottle of wine, a trip to the spa, or breakfast at breakfast at Oceana Grill & Café Restaurant. There is a good time waiting for you and your family. Rosarito Inn has such amenities as high speed internet,pools, Jacuzzi, washer/dryer in each unit, fully equipped kitchens, direct beach access, cable TV, gated access to parking and much more.

Rosarito Inn also features a number of local merchants that host Rosarito Inn guests, including Oceana Spa and the finest fusion of Mexican and American cuisine at Oceana Grill & Cafe Restaurant. All around Rosarito Inn, you will find Arts and Crafts Marketplace, gift shops, restaurants, night clubs, and tourist attractions.

Whether in town to relax, shop, or just have a fun time, Rosarito Inn is very pleased to show you the best in Mexican hospitality. The famous Puerto Nuevo Lobster Village is an experience you won't want to miss out on. Golfing is available from a number of locations and sand dunes are just south of town for getting out on your ATV. Horseback riding is also within walking distance.


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