Monday, April 10
*Eve of Pesach [Passover]
- Judaism (ends on April 18)
The beginning of an eight-day festival celebrating God's deliverance of the Israelites from slavery in Egypt. The story is told during a Seder meal at sundown, including readings from a book known as the Haggadah. Some Jews refrain from work on the first two and the last two days of this holiday.
Tuesday, April 11
*Theravadin New Year - Buddhism
The New Year festival for Theravadin Buddhists, celebrated for three days beginning on the first full moon day in April.
A celebration of the birth of Hanuman, the faithful servant of the god Rama who can assume any form in order to conquer evil. Believers visit temples and apply sindoor (red powder) to their foreheads, since Hanuman is often portrayed as a red half-monkey, half-human.
Thursday, April 13
*Maundy Thursday [Holy Thursday] - Christianity (Western churches)
The remembrance of Jesus' last supper with his disciples and his institution of the "love commandment" (the term "Maundy" comes from the Latin word for "commandment") while he washed their feet as a servant.
*Eve of Great and Holy Friday - Christianity (Eastern churches)
At sundown Eastern churches commemorate Jesus' death by crucifixion, followed by an observance of the Great Sabbath, in which believers remember Christ's burial and await his resurrection on Holy Pascha, or Easter morning.
Friday, April 14
*Good Friday or Great and Holy Friday - Christianity (Western and Eastern churches)
A commemoration of the passion of Jesus of Nazareth, i.e., his death by crucifixion. At sundown some churches begin the Easter vigil either this evening or on Holy Saturday (April 15).
The first day of the solar year and an important harvest festival in northern India.
*Vaisakhi [or Baisakhi] - Sikhism
On this date in 1699 C.E., Guru Gobind Singh, the tenth Guru, created the Khalsa Panth, the Brotherhood of the Pure. Khalsa brothers are given the name Singh (lion), and sisters are named Kaur (princess).
Sunday, April 16
*Easter Sunday or Holy Pascha - Christianity (Western and Eastern churches)
Celebrating God's raising of Jesus of Nazareth from the dead, this day is the oldest and most central festival in the Christian year and initiates the fifty-day period culminating in Pentecost.
*Yaqui Deer Dance
- Native American spirituality
A ceremony that integrates ancient rites of the Yaqui people of Arizona with the Christian Easter rituals.