Friday, April 06, 2007

The reason for the season (hint: not the bunny)

Yesterday evening, I was online reading about the origins of Easter, the Easter bunny, the Easter egg, the Easter egg hunt, the Easter basket, and so on. (Like most holidays, Easter’s history is complicated and comprises various traditions, both Christian, 'pagan,' and other.)

As I was trying to make sense of the god "Ishtar" (promounced "Easter" by some) and her relationship to hares and fertility and what-not, my phone rang. It was Grandmommy and Granddaddy (my mother's parents) calling from Ft. Worth, Texas.

We spoke of my work, my next visit to Texas (likely over 6 months away), Sam and Katy’s baby shower, and many other things.

Though it never seems enough when talking through a phone from the other side of the equator and Atlantic Ocean, I told them again how grateful I am for all they have given me, how much I love an miss them.

After saying goodbye, I closed the internet browser because, let’s face it, Easter in essence has nothing to do with Ishtar, hollow chocolate bunnies, colored vinegar, and a tangled nest of plastic grass-like stuff.

Easter is a celebration of the perpetuity of life, the sovereignty of love and renewal in an often spiteful, withering world.

...more or less, I would say, that is what Easter is.

For me, this is a time to be glad that I have beautiful grandparents (you too, Grandma), and to miss them, for the life I cherish comes from them, and they have nurtured me through many Good Fridays and Passovers.

They have also fed me several hundred pastel Hershey’s Kisses and M&Ms over the years.

As you know, I do not use this blog for solicitations, with one exception: Young Heroes. This organization provides relief to Swaziland’s orphans, and does it with next to no administrative costs. Brendan Hayes, a friend of mine and a Young Heroes volunteer, sent me the following image yesterday.

I know that Easter is not nicknamed “the season for giving” and that it does not line up well with the end of the tax year, but no holiday is better suited to defend the sanctity of life, especially life that is vulnerable.

Thank you for reading. Please have a look below.


At 9:46 PM, Blogger mycanada said...

Hello Ryan,

Congratulations for your commitment to the wonderful people of Swaziland. How long have you been there for? How is your overall experience so far?

I had the opportunity to spend three weeks in Nkamazi and Manzini last May and will again next month. I had raised money to help provide for water in the small community of Nkamzi and I'm looking foward to visit them again soon. (I'll be there from May 13-27)

My sister, a nurse, is also coming with me and will conduct a health study in the village and then hopefully have the opportunity to meet with the health minister. We're both from New-Brunswick, Canada.

Are you working directly in Mbabane? If so, would it be possible to visit your clinic? My sister's specialty is Maternity and she would love to assist a child birth (if possible). She's also a nursing specialist and she has a lot of knowledge that she'd like to share with the young women. I'm really close with TASQ organization, they have been extremely supportive of me and my cause.

I hope to hear from you. You can contact me at:

Take good care,



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