VATICAN – It was a stunning display of inter-religious comraderie as Christians, both Catholic and Protestant alike, flocked to their places of worship this Easter in order to pay homage to the pagan sun god Ēostre, and mark the beginning of the summer harvest festival of the once widespread pagan faith.
The event has become an annual tradition of the Christian faithful in honouring and recognising the belief systems that preceded their own. Anglican Archbishop Glenn Davies opened his Sunday mass with a specific nod to the few remaining pagans, stating “Before we begin todays proceedings, I would like to acknowledge and pay respect to the traditional owners of this holiday, the pagan people of the British Isles. It is upon their feasts and idols that this Christian holiday is built.”
However not all were so cordial, with some pagan groups speaking out against what they see as little more than opportunistic cultural appropriation. “They’ve taken the core elements of our beliefs, the eggs, the rabbits, the pine trees and the holly and they’ve stripped them of all meaning.” says high Shaman Michael Roberts from his algae spa, “For many in the pagan faith it’s no longer Eostre’s Day, to us it’s Invalidation Day.”
Criticism was also rife within the Christian community, with many older Christians expressing their concern that young people were simply in it for the worship of Christ, and had forgotten the real meaning behind Easter. “Kids these days wouldn’t even know why we have chocolate eggs and rabbits!” said one elderly man attending Mass at St. Mary’s cathedral. “All they care about is salvation and resurrection, but show them a pagan fertility symbol and they’ve no idea what it means. It’s a disgrace, we need to get back to the days when kids were out running around in nature, climbing trees and worshipping them as minor deities.”
Both groups were nevertheless quick to praise Pope Francis for his witty dawn mass this morning, in which he employed the use of double entendre in reference to “the celebration of the rise of god’s son”, in a subtle but obvious Easter reference to the pagan’s sun god. “Small gestures like this are very important for building inter-religious friendships,” says Professor of Theocracy at Notre Dame Peter Peteson “This, as well as the Pope’s ritual sacrifice of a newborn at sunset, will no doubt heal many rifts that have formed between the two groups.”