Easter eggs are already on seasonal produce shelves in supermarkets as families wonder what the annual celebrations for 2022 will look like.
Covid restrictions have had a major impact on the Easter holidays for the past two years, but with no lockdown in place during the current Omicron wave, Brits are all hoping for more normality this year.
Many people are looking forward to Easter due to the long weekend with a bank holiday on either side – and it’s usually part of a two-week break for schools and colleges.
This means the possibility of spending family days or vacations. So when is Easter 2022?
While we don’t know for sure what restrictions might still be in place for Easter 2022, we can put the dates in our diaries.
The Easter holidays affect the opening hours of shops and businesses as well as public transport timetables.
Easter is the next holiday of the year after the New Year and comes just after the onset of spring, so it’s something many of us look forward to during the cold and dark winter months.
So when will Easter fall in 2022? Here are all the key dates.
When is Easter 2022?
Easter changes from year to year but always falls between March 22 and April 25.
The dates for 2022 will fall two weeks later than 2021, with Good Friday on April 15, the main Easter Day or Easter Sunday on April 17, and then Easter Monday on April 18.
Friday and Monday are both public holidays. Tradition dictates that Easter is always organized this way with a four-day weekend starting on Friday.
The main dates for Easter 2022 are as follows:
Good Friday – April 15 (public holiday)
Holy Saturday – April 16
Easter Sunday or Easter Day – April 17
Easter Monday – April 18 (public holiday)
Note that Holy Saturday is sometimes incorrectly called Easter Saturday, but it is actually the following Saturday (April 23, 2022).
When are the Easter school holidays in 2022?
In 2022, the spring term ends on Friday April 8 and the summer term begins on Monday April 25.
Thus, the Easter school holidays would take place between these dates.
These are the dates for many local authority areas across the UK, including Birmingham.
Why does the date of Easter change every year?
Easter is known as a movable feast, which means a religious holiday that moves in the calendar from year to year.
In the Western Christian calendar there are a number of movable feasts in the year.
These include Mardi Gras, Ash Wednesday, Lent, Mother’s Day, all Easter dates, Pentecost/Pentecost and Advent.
The method used to calculate Easter is known as computing, a name used since medieval times when it was the most important calculation at the time.
There was no fixed date for Easter until a group of bishops met at the First Council of Nicaea in AD 325 to decide “unanimous agreement on the celebration of the holy and supremely excellent day of God – and how it should be worked out.
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They agreed that Easter Day – the day of Christ’s resurrection – should be on the same date across the world and would always be the first Sunday following the Passover full moon.
Jesus had been crucified on the day we now call Good Friday, the day after the Last Supper (the day we call Maundy Thursday) and it was at the time of the Jewish holiday of Passover.
Passover always occurs on the first full moon after the vernal equinox.
However, the full moon can fall on different days in different time zones, so the bishops decided that it would always be assumed to be the 14th day of the lunar month. This is called the Easter full moon.
The vernal equinox can be March 19, 20 or 21, but for calculation purposes the date is always taken as March 21.
Once the date of the moon is known, Passover is determined, and then Easter can be worked out.
And Greek Easter?
The Eastern Orthodox Church uses the earlier Julian calendar to determine what is known as Greek Easter or Orthodox Easter, even after Europe adopted the Gregorian calendar in 1582.
This tradition is celebrated elsewhere than in Greece.
Other countries that officially observe Eastern Orthodox Easter include Cyprus, Romania, Bulgaria, Russia, Ukraine, Lebanon, and the Republic of Macedonia.
The Eastern Orthodox Churches follow the same tradition. It affects those living in Egypt, Ethiopia, Eritrea, India, Syria, Turkey and Armenia.
This year, the Orthodox Easter dates are a week later than for Western churches. The two festivities can be simultaneous or separated for up to five weeks.
See all Greek Easter 2022 dates here.
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