MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — Jean from Northfield asked: Why do we associate Easter with a bunny?

The word Easter isn’t in any scripture, but back in the Middle Ages people in the Northern Hemisphere associated this time of year with new life, or spring. Eostre is a goddess in Germanic paganism, and fertile rabbits (or hares) are synonymous with new life.

Bob asked: How is the date of Easter determined?

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“Easter is celebrated on the first Sunday after the first full moon after the vernal of springtime equinox,” said Rev. Michael Joncas, a fellow at the Center for Catholic Studies at the University of St. Thomas.

Given, the vernal equinox falls on March 21, Easter can fall anytime between March 22 and April 25. Back in the 325 A.D., the First Council of Nicaea convened by the Roman Emperor Constantine determined the date.

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The significance of the full moon is because that was Passover in the Jewish calendar, when Jesus is believed to have celebrated his Last Supper. It’s always on a Sunday, because that was the day of the Resurrection.

Chuck from Clearwater asked: Why are jellybeans associated with Easter?

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Jellybeans are shaped like eggs, which symbolize new life. When the eggs crack, the chick comes out and some consider it a symbol of Christ coming forth.

Heather Brown