When the novel coronavirus started making headlines, Monica Muñoz-Estrada remembers thinking about how she felt Christians were well-prepared.
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“Lent, the forty days before Easter, was February 26, and since then it has been a time of reflection and getting closer to God,” says Muñoz-Estrada, a 40-year-old Catholic Miamian. The global pandemic hit during the holiest time of the year in the Christian calendar.
During this time of the year Christians are preparing for Easter, which celebrates the resurrection of Jesus Christ. The coronavirus lockdown has changed the way people celebrate these religious holidays. Muñoz-Estrada, a mother of two, says although this year’s Easter will be different, the celebration will go on despite coronavirus.
“I managed to get the last bottle of my kids’ favorite juice two weeks ago when I went to the supermarket and we’re saving it for Easter lunch,” says Muñoz-Estrada.
She says the little things matter when preparing for religious holidays. This year’s Easter egg hunt is still on.
“We’ll do an Easter egg hunt at home with whatever candy we still have,” says Muñoz-Estrada. “The eggs will have some special messages inside ... like: tonight you pick movie night or you pick what’s for lunch or maybe even your turn to do dishes.”
For many Christians the biggest change about Easter has been not being able to go to Mass. Florida has declared a stay-at-home executive order, and although religious services are deemed essential, many religious institutions have chosen to follow the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s guidelines of staying at home and 6 feet apart.
Many South Floridians, like 64-year-old Gina Trotz from Miramar, have shifted their celebrations online. Her church choir at St. Paul Lutheran Church in Weston is holding practices virtually.
“The church service on Easter Sunday is typically a very joyous occasion with the choir belting the Hallelujah chorus at the end, this year we’ll be singing along from our beds,” says Trotz.
Trotz will celebrate Easter from home with her family and a nice home-cooked meal.
“The message of Easter is the same: It is rebirth after death. But it is particularly relevant at this time when the whole world is experiencing pain and suffering,” says Trotz. “Like our Lord and savior, our world will be reborn.”
WLRN wants to hear how you and your family are handling holidays during the COVID-19 crisis. Whether it’s Passover, Easter or Ramadan, send us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org.