Categorized | Commentary/Editorial

AGU: Happy Easter from…Lithuania?

This Easter Sunday many American families come together with traditions that have been around for centuries. As we celebrate the traditions of our faith we are reminded that the customs of Easter and Passover are linked by our ancestry.

Regardless of race, doctrine, or place of birth, our faith in God unites us and reminds us of America’s Judeo-Christian foundation.

From Passover Matzo Ball Soup to coloured Easter eggs, our ancestry is full of traditions loaded with symbolism and representations.

In my family the tradition of making Lithuanian Easter eggs has been passed down for many generations.

Droplets of hot bees wax are applied to the eggs with a wooden toothpick topped with a small bead (In the 13th century before the invention of toothpicks a small fish bone was used).

The droplets of hot bees wax create patterns that begin with making a cross on the egg and then filling in the cross with more strokes that resemble a floral pattern.

After the patterns on the eggs are created by joining the dots and strokes, the eggs are coloured with the lightest colour. Then more patterns of bees wax are applied, and the egg is then dyed with darker colours.

Traditionally these eggs are given to family, friends, and business associates. They are said to bring prosperity. Farmers in the 20th century used to place the eggs in the fields to ensure a good harvest, while the farmers wife would leave an egg at the entrance to the barn as the cows were driven out to pasture (my Great Grandmother used to bury them in her back yard).

It’s comforting to know that the ancient origins of our values will be celebrated for many years to come as we watch our families observing the customs of Passover and Easter.

Happy Easter.

Thomas S Schmitz

American Grizzlies United; Chairman

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