The Easter Season flows from the Easter Vigil and concludes fifty days later on Pentecost Sunday. It is a joyous season in which we celebrate Christ’s resurrection and ascension, as well as the coming of the Holy Spirit and the beginning of the Church. This is a time of rejoicing, when Alleluia should be sung with heartfelt emotion.
Every Sunday during the year the church celebrates the resurrection of Jesus. However, St. Athanasius regarded the fifty days of the Easter season as “the Great Sunday.” Reflecting this view, the Sundays of the Easter season are not called Sundays after Easter, but Sundays of Easter.
On Easter Sunday the gospel is John’s account of finding the empty tomb, although the gospel texts from the Easter vigil may also be read.
The gospel selections until the third Sunday of Easter recount the appearances of the risen Christ. On the Fourth Sunday of Easter the gospel reading speaks of the Good Shepherd. The gospels for the fifth, sixth, and seventh Sundays of Easter present the teaching and prayer of Christ at the Last Supper.
The color used during the Easter season is white, signifying the joy of Christ’s resurrection. The last day of the Easter Season is Pentecost Sunday, on which we celebrate the coming of the Holy Spirit. On this day, red is the liturgical color, representing the fire of the Holy Spirit.
The Paschal Candle and water represent the light and new life of Christ’s resurrection and the water of our baptism and rebirth.