I was asked, “How should one celebrate the days after Easter?”
So I looked it up on beliefnet and found a great suggestion. Celebrate
“with a good laugh, of course. Better yet, with a party, a really fun
party.” Far from being a strange, new idea, this is actually a long-standing
tradition rooted in good Christian theology.
It began hundreds of years ago. A monk, whose name has been lost in history,
was pondering the meaning of the events of holy week, with its solemn
observances of Maundy Thursday, Good Friday, and the astonishing,
earth-shaking events of Easter. “What a surprise ending,” he thought. Then
suddenly, like a bolt of lightning, he had a new insight. His hearty laugh
startled his fellow monks, breaking the silence of their contemplation.
“Don’t you see,” he cried, “It was a joke! A great joke! The best joke in
all history! On Good Friday, when Jesus was crucified, the devil thought he
had won. But God had the last laugh on Easter when he raised Jesus from the
The monks called it “the Easter laugh.” The idea spread rapidly, and the day
after Easter became known as a “Day of Joy and Laughter” in Orthodox,
Catholic, and Protestant countries. In homes and churches, it became common
to celebrate God’s great joke on the devil with joke-telling sessions.
So, why not have a “Week-After-Easter Party”? Revive this very old custom
and hold Easter Monday parties or to have Holy Humor Sunday the week
following Easter. Joy, joy, joy!
In this spirit, here are ideas you could use for your Week-After-Easter
party. (Since this is a fun event, don’t take the party food too seriously.
Instead, serve left-over Easter eggs, marshmallow chicks, jellybeans, and
other Easter candies. If you wait until after Easter, you can find these at
half price, and have fun talking about the bargains you found. If you think
your reputation as a host or hostess will suffer too much without more
legitimate party food, you can also add a decorated cake in the shape of an
egg or with other decorations.
*Begin by reading or telling the origin of the Easter laugh and the Day of
Joy and Laughter you’ve just learned.
*You might ask, “Do you think Jesus laughed?” That will get a conversation
*Ask the group to share their favorite jokes. Encourage hearty laughter. Be
sure to have one or two you can tell to prime the pump.
*Ask, “Can you remember anything funny that happened in your church? In
Bible class? At church camp? At your wedding?”
*Print out some favorite grif.net humor and pass them around the table.
God is still at work the week after Easter. God works in situations that
seem utterly hopeless and bleak before he brings surprise endings and has
the ‘last laugh’. So, this week-after-Easter, don’t mope around wishing you
had more bunny ears to bite or peeps to behead, but go out with joy this
weekend. And may the joy of the Lord be your strength.
Dr Bob Griffin
“Jesus Knows Me, This I Love!”