Local church celebrates Easter with egg hunt, packed-out services
SHEPHERDSTOWN The sun was shining for a familial Easter weekend at St. Agnes Catholic Church at 200 South Duke Street, where egg hunts and family traditions were in bloom.
The pews of St. Agnes was filled during both of the church’s morning services, which included a ceremonial baptism performed for Maleia Shaylen Walton and prayers for those effected by the Notre Dame Cathedral fire and the bombings in Sri Lanka.
“I have family here in the area and don’t get to see each other often. This is the perfect time to do it,” said Chris, of Lafayette, Louisiana. “I’ve been involved in Church since I was a child in New York. So, Easter, as a holiday and a celebration, is very near and dear to my heart.”
Following mass, the church held its annual Easter egg hunt for kids of all ages to search for more than 300 eggs. The children lined up outside the congregation’s parking lot, ready to race towards finding the most eggs.
The Easter egg hunt is a tradition that has not changed much since its origin, the egg hunt had a large turnout, offering laughs and fun in the spring sun. The eggs were originally thought of as a symbol of resurrection and rebirth in Christian teaching, which was reminiscent of the Jesus’ resurrection story. According to sources, German immigrants who settled in Pennsylvania brought the tradition with them. They laid colored eggs in the nest their children built for the egg-laying hare, named “Osterhase.”
Easter, traditionally, is the celebration of the Holy Triduum, beginning on Holy Thursday and ending with an evening prayer on Easter Sunday. These days commemorate Jesus Christ’s passion, death and resurrection.
Nina, a Shepherdstown resident, celebrated Passion Week over the few days before Easter Sunday, with a unique perspective on the aspects of giving, rather than abstaining, for Lent.
“I taught Christian Faith Formation, and I used to emphasize that it isn’t about giving up something,” Nina said. “Instead, go out of your comfort zone and take the steps to give to those. Whether it is a nice gesture or a gift, be encouraged and recognize the power of giving.”