breaking news

Former Trump campaign aide Rick Gates pleads guilty in Mueller investigation

When is Easter 2018 and why does the date change each year?


No one ever wonders when Christmas falls each year, but Easter Sunday is a different story.

>> Read more trending news 

The Christian holiday, which celebrates Christ’s resurrection from the dead following his crucifixion, marks the end of the Holy Week, or Lent.

When is Easter 2018?

This year’s Easter Sunday falls on April 1 and no, that’s not an April Fool’s joke.

How is the date determined?

Today, Easter is celebrated on the first Sunday after the Paschal full moon, the full moon after the spring equinox. Once the date of the full moon is set, it’s easy to determine the date of Easter Sunday and other Easter holidays.

>> Related: It’s Lenten season: Why it’s not always good to give up things for Lent

Why Sunday?

In 325 CE, the Council of Nicaea, a gathering of Christian bishops, decided that there should be a more organized and universal way to decide when Easter would be celebrated, the AJC previously reported.

They decided that the holiday would be held the first Sunday after the first full moon occurring on or after the spring equinox, which always occurs on March 21. 

If the full moon falls on a Sunday, Easter is delayed a week.

>> Related: What is Mardi Gras, Ash Wednesday, and how do we celebrate?

Why does the date change each year?

The date of Easter changes, because the Paschal full moon can fall on various days in different time zones.

But because Easter falls on a Sunday after the March 21 spring equinox, it will always occur on a Sunday between March 22 and April 25. That’s also why Easter and Christian holidays leading up to that day, such as Ash Wednesday, Palm Sunday and Good Friday, are referred to as “moveable feasts.”

>> Related: Ash Wednesday around the world

Do Christians celebrate Easter Sunday on the same day?

According to Encyclopedia Brittanica, the Eastern Orthodox typically celebrate Easter Sunday later than Protestants and Roman Catholics. That’s because Eastern Orthodox churches didn’t adopt the Gregorian calendar method and instead follow the Julian calendar, a solar calendar adopted by Julius Caesar in 45 BC, which is 13 days ahead of the Gregorian calendar.

>> Related: How did a bunny become the Easter symbol?

When was Easter 2017? 

Last year, Easter Sunday fell on April 16.

When will Easter 2019 be?

Next year, Easter Sunday will fall on April 21.

>> Related: Percentage of white American Christians decreasing, report says


Reader Comments ...


Next Up in Nation World

Gov. John Kasich forms group to tackle gun violence in Ohio
Gov. John Kasich forms group to tackle gun violence in Ohio

Ohio Gov. John Kasich said he is hoping that a group he’s convened to find solutions to gun violence in the state will be able to deliver something by the end of business next week to the Ohio General Assembly. Kasich, in Washington, D.C. for a meeting of the National Governors Association, declined to lay out what the group is considering, but...
K99.1FM named finalist for national radio award
K99.1FM named finalist for national radio award

K99.1FM has been recognized for its commitment to the community. The National Association of Broadcasters announced the finalists for the 31st Annual Crystal awards and WHKO-FM (K99.1FM) in Dayton was selected. The award recognizes radio stations for their outstanding year-round commitment to community service. Ten winners will be selected from the...
Florida Gov. Rick Scott calls for reform to state's gun laws, increase in school security
Florida Gov. Rick Scott calls for reform to state's gun laws, increase in school security

In the wake of  mass shooting at a Florida high school, Gov. Rick Scott on Friday proposed a three-point plan to prevent gun violence that includes banning the sale of firearms to anyone younger than 21. The announcement comes more than one week after deputies said Nikolas Cruz, 19, returned to Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School after being...
Wright State: University can overcome $6M in surprise costs
Wright State: University can overcome $6M in surprise costs

Wright State University is facing a new hurdle in its attempt to stick to its budget for the first time since 2011, but school leaders believe they can still reach their targets. Members of the school’s board of trustees were told Friday that WSU has gone $6 million over budget on employee health benefits this fiscal year. It marks at least the...
Jennifer Lopez celebrates twins Max and Emme’s 10th birthday
Jennifer Lopez celebrates twins Max and Emme’s 10th birthday

Jennifer Lopez and Marc Anthony’s twins are growing up so fast! Max and Emme celebrated their 10th birthday on Feb. 22, and Lopez was right there to celebrate with her kids, sharing multiple posts on Instagram.  >> Read more trending news  Sharing a video of her kids’ -- whom she affectionately calls her coconuts -- cutest...
More Stories