Religion – Holyblog.com http://192.168.99.122/com Holyart.com Blog Tue, 25 Jul 2017 07:31:35 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=4.4.10 http://192.168.99.122/com/wp-content/uploads/sites/10/2016/04/cropped-logo-32x32.png Religion – Holyblog.com http://192.168.99.122/com 32 32 Pentecost: the day when we celebrate the Holy Spirit and the birth of the Church http://192.168.99.122/com/religious-items/pentecost-day-celebrate-holy-spirit-birth-church/ Tue, 20 Jun 2017 14:45:38 +0000 http://192.168.99.122/com/?p=372 Pentecost is perhaps, after Easter, one of the most important festivities of the Catholic Church. It’s the celebration of the descent of the Holy Spirit, the third person of the Most Holy Trinity, after the Resurrection of Jesus and, in a sense, the very birth […]

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Pentecost is perhaps, after Easter, one of the most important festivities of the Catholic Church. It’s the celebration of the descent of the Holy Spirit, the third person of the Most Holy Trinity, after the Resurrection of Jesus and, in a sense, the very birth of the Church.

It originally coincided with the Jewish celebration of Shavout, a celebration dedicated to the harvest in the period following Easter. On this occasion, the Jews thanked God for the fruits the land gave to them. Later on, it also became the commemoration of the day Moses received the Ten Commandments on top of Mount Sinai.

Today Catholics celebrate the Pentecost 50 days after Easter. The remembrance of the Jewish holiday is still there, especially in the thankful approach of the faithful to God. In fact even in Christian Pentecost we speak of a great and precious gift God wanted to give to His people: the Grace of the Holy Spirit. In the second chapter of the Acts of the Apostles, Mary and the Apostles gathered to celebrate Pentecost with the usual pilgrimage to Jerusalem, like many Jews. The Holy Ghost descended upon them in the form of a roar from the sky and tongues of fire, which flashed each one of them. From that moment on, they were able to speak any language.

The sanctifying features of the Holy Spirit are a symbol of unification and inspiration for the apostles who, after this miraculous meeting, feel they have to begin their ecumenical mission and create the Church. Before this episode, the Holy Spirit was not described as a divine person. Only in the New Testament, the vision of the Spirit of God as an impersonal force that plots the destinies of the universe is joined together with the cult of His personality: the Holy Spirit becomes a personification of God’s love towards His children, infinite wisdom used when teaching the disciples of Jesus to become promoters of truth and salvation among men. It is often depicted as a white dove, or like the flame tongues that would have touched Mary and the Apostles.

The Holy Spirit offers many gifts to those who receive it: wisdom, intellect, advice, strength, science, pity, and fear of God. All faithful benefit from the Baptism before and the Confirmation after. Pentecost is a celebration involving all faithful and especially their families, held in the grace of the Holy Spirit and more united and strong against the difficulties of every day.

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The role of the priest in the Holy Communion http://192.168.99.122/com/religious-items/role-priest-holy-communion/ Tue, 13 Jun 2017 14:43:27 +0000 http://192.168.99.122/com/?p=366 The role of the priest in the Communion’s preparations is important and complex in its gestures, words and symbols, defined since the origins of the Church in a precise and recurring ritual. The purpose of this ritual is to prepare the group of Faithful to […]

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The role of the priest in the Communion’s preparations is important and complex in its gestures, words and symbols, defined since the origins of the Church in a precise and recurring ritual.

The purpose of this ritual is to prepare the group of Faithful to the moment when, by consuming Bread and Wine, the sacrifice of love of Jesus Christ will be renewed once again, and His promise of hope offered to all men of goodwill.

The priest who prepares the faithful to the Holy Communion becomes the guide and vehicle not just to the Eucharist, but to Jesus Himself represented by it. The common prayers, the Pater Noster above all, a sign of respect and solemnity, symbolize the path of faith, our internal journey together with the other faithful. The Eucharist is, above all, a moment of community and devotion, and needs to be celebrated as such.

Following the prayers and the exchange of the sign of peace, a gesture that confirms the will of communion and unity of the assembly, the priest breaks the bread, symbolized by the Great Ostia, eats a piece, raises the chalice and recites: “The Body And the Blood of Christ, together in this cup, are for us food of eternal life”. From that moment, the host and the chalice are in all respects the body and blood of Christ, with His blessing and grace.

Agnus Dei is also a time for meditation and community prayer, when the faithful are preparing themselves to accept Communion. The priest prays too, silently, and asks to be purified through the Body and Blood of Christ, which become for him and for all a protection for the soul. Communion is followed by a moment of silence: the immensity of the mystery, and the fact that we just received the body and blood of Christ, requires it even during a moment of community and devotion.

The prayer after the Holy Communion, and the Amen with which the faithful responds to it, brings the ritual of Communion back on a communal level and to its end.

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5 questions and 5 answers to the altar wine http://192.168.99.122/com/religious-items/5-questions-5-answers-altar-wine/ Tue, 06 Jun 2017 13:09:24 +0000 http://192.168.99.122/com/?p=360 During the Last Supper, Jesus offered his disciples bread and wine, celebrating therefore the first Eucharist. Bread becomes body, wine becomes blood, in a solemn ritual that transcends every human understanding, but which has been renewed every day for thousands of years, throughout the world, […]

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During the Last Supper, Jesus offered his disciples bread and wine, celebrating therefore the first Eucharist. Bread becomes body, wine becomes blood, in a solemn ritual that transcends every human understanding, but which has been renewed every day for thousands of years, throughout the world, in the name of infinite love: a promise of hope, salvation and freedom from sins for all men. Beyond the theological and indisputable dogma which this statement is based on, there are some lovely human curiosities we would like to explore with you.

For instance, what wine is used for Mass?

A natural wine, produced according to Article 924 of the Code of Canon Law. It can be produced by a convent or by a laic business: the important thing is that it has received permission from the curia, and meets the chemical requirements. Wine can be either white or red. For example we suggest Martinez’s mass wine, a sweet and liqueur wine produced by the historic Martinez company under the supervision of the Vicar of Fornae, with the Bishop’s permission, or the Morreale’s mass wine, also produced according to the applicable Canon Law and with The bishop of Mazara del Vallo’s permission. The choice of liqueur wines is because they’re easier to preserve.

Is it correct to mix wine and water?

Absolutely yes. In addition to the fact that it was normal to dilute the wine with water at the time of Jesus, there is also a symbolic reason. Water symbolizes the human nature of Jesus mixed with the divine one, represented by the altar wine. Furthermore, mixing water and wine reminds of Jesus who, by taking our sins on him, erases them.

Bread and wine have the same importance in the Eucharist?

Yes. The Priest is obliged to consecrate both and consume them during the celebration. If he’s a non-drinker, it can be limited to a minimum quantity of wine, or even just dip the consecrated host. Instead, the priest can decide whether to give the faithful only one of the two elements or both, since Jesus is present in both bread and wine. The choice in this case depends on the priest.

What to do if the wine falls

Consecrated wine is, in all respects, the blood of Christ, and as such sacred. It can’t be poured in vain, it absolutely can’t be thrown away, and punishment is excommunication. If there’s wine left in the cup, the celebrant must drink it. Throughout the rite, wine must be covered by a small veil, because no external body can contaminate it. If it falls accidentally, it is necessary to wash the area with water which will then be poured into the sacristy of the sacristy.

And what if a non-priest drinks wine outside the Mass?

Well, it’s wine, which could be more or less nice. What makes it special is not the taste, but its consecration. If, however, it’s drunk outside the Mass with a blasphemous purpose, the punishment is excommunication.

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Combine elegance and faith: Discovering the Holyart Jewelery http://192.168.99.122/com/religious-items/combine-elegance-faith-discovering-holyart-jewelery/ Tue, 30 May 2017 13:07:13 +0000 http://192.168.99.122/com/?p=354 Who said that you can’t combine beauty, elegance and faith into a single, perfect combination? Holyart has tried to do so with its collection of exclusive jewels handmade by Italian jewelery masters, beautiful to wear and unique. These are jewels made of gold, silver, hard […]

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Who said that you can’t combine beauty, elegance and faith into a single, perfect combination? Holyart has tried to do so with its collection of exclusive jewels handmade by Italian jewelery masters, beautiful to wear and unique. These are jewels made of gold, silver, hard stones, and enriched with refined decorations and beautiful hand-made chisels.

Truly old-fashioned objects for the care and the raw materials selected, but also with an eye for modernity and fashion, as we also offer design jewels from innovative lines like the MATER, which features rings, rosaries and bracelets in silver 925. Modern jewelry, characterized by refinement, elegance and solidity, such as the ring-rosary in silver, available in light version, burnished or decorated with enamels that give a touch of color and more refinement.

For those looking for a more classic lines linked to tradition, why not choose from the many angel-shaped pendants, wonderful gifts for First Communion or Confirmation, or any other occasion?

For example, Raffaello’s angel-shaped pendant in 750/00 gold polished, handcrafted at an Italian ornament shop with over sixty years of history. This is a light and young jewel despite the great definition of details.

You can also choose from a wide selection of silver rosaries, decorated with punching and enriched with hard stones (amethyst, agate, Quartz, onyx black, coral, turquoise), brilliant, river pearls, nacre or Swarovski crystal. Our rosaries are handcrafted by experienced masters too.

Furthermore, for a special gift to celebrate an important moment, a silver bracelet can be the ideal present. In our wide selection of silver and gold bracelets, decorated with gemstones, brilliant or Swarovski crystal, we offer a delightful silver bracelet with modern and elegant lines, decorated with small stylized angels, a gift ideal for those who always want to carry a piece of sky with them.

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Here are some gift ideas for your wedding day http://192.168.99.122/com/religious-items/gift-ideas-wedding-day/ Thu, 25 May 2017 13:06:07 +0000 http://192.168.99.122/com/?p=351 The wedding day is a very important, precious, and unique moment. It definitely is so for those who get married and see their dream of love coming to life with the person they chose to be their companion or partner for life. It is also […]

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The wedding day is a very important, precious, and unique moment. It definitely is so for those who get married and see their dream of love coming to life with the person they chose to be their companion or partner for life. It is also for relatives and friends who are invited to take part in the celebration and party that seals this union of love.

Like every celebrations, marriage is also characterized by the presence of gifts. Gifts for the spouses, who often choose to make a wedding list, to receive help from the one who love them to furnish and decorate their new home; but not everyone follows this path, leaving friends with the task of finding the right gift for the occasion.

Gift ideas for a wedding can be of many kinds, but always need to be really special. You can opt for jewels like rings, bracelets, pendants, crosses, crucifixes. There are also wonderful religious statues depicting happy couples, porcelain or silver bas-reliefs that can adorn the house of the newlyweds with solemn and valuable icons. However, even a simple greeting card if chosen correctly and written with love, can be a precious and welcome gift suitable for all pockets.

There are also the gifts that the bride and groom offer to their guests like the bonbonnieres, memories, small items, but that will leave a precious and imperishable memory. There are all kinds and materials, for all tastes and pockets, in a square shape to hang or lean, or in the shape of a heart, drop, or leaf. Gift ideas for the wedding day can be made with metallic and silver decorations, Murano glass, silver foil or crystal inserts. Even in this case, creativity and ‘feeling‘ always win: a card or a cardboard with words of poetry or a particularly significant song for the bride will have even more value than a precious metal object. In the end and from both sides, the important thing is to put our heart on it.

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The Dominican’s Rosary Movement http://192.168.99.122/com/religious-items/dominicans-rosary-movement/ Tue, 23 May 2017 13:04:50 +0000 http://192.168.99.122/com/?p=348 The Dominican’s Rosary Movement shows both the desire for community devotion and the desire to promote Dominican Spirituality and the philosophy of love linked to the Holy Rosary. Dominicans daily lives involve searching for truth and intimacy with Jesus, pursued by daily actions, but above […]

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The Dominican’s Rosary Movement shows both the desire for community devotion and the desire to promote Dominican Spirituality and the philosophy of love linked to the Holy Rosary.

Dominicans daily lives involve searching for truth and intimacy with Jesus, pursued by daily actions, but above all by faith and meditation research associated with the Rosary.

For Dominicans, Virgin Mary’s love, from whose holy hands Saint Dominic received the Rosary, becomes a means for approaching Christ and his saving light. The Rosary is intended as a tool of personal and communal meditation and prayer, but for preaching. The task of the Movement’s members is to carry Mary’s spiritual values ​​and invite those who haven’t found them, get to know them and make them enter their lives as a tool of salvation and faith. Common reflection and prayer in the name of the Blessed Virgin Mary serves as a crucible for spirit and forge in order to create new men.

Another of the objectives of the Dominican’s Rosary Movement is to welcome those who, curious about this profession of Faith and form of devotion, want to know more about it. The task of the father responsible for the Dominican Movement of the Rosary is to bring everywhere the experience of reflection and prayer, as a testimony of faith and example of a path even to those who haven’t yet understood its steps.

The Movement also offers and organizes occasions of common prayer and meeting, pilgrimages in sanctuaries and conferences aimed at reflecting on the mysteries of the Holy Rosary. Those who can’t afford long journeys are invited to the Regional Rosary Rallies, but there are also more ambition and complex proposals, such as group holiday, opportunities for common meditation and devotion to the Virgin Mary.

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Veneration of sacred images http://192.168.99.122/com/religious-items/veneration-sacred-images/ Thu, 18 May 2017 13:03:36 +0000 http://192.168.99.122/com/?p=345 The Catholic Church has always used sacred images and statues for the practice of worship. Naturally it doesn’t come to mind that the first Christians were forced to hide their faith and to lead their worshipping in secret places, where, at most, they could use […]

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The Catholic Church has always used sacred images and statues for the practice of worship. Naturally it doesn’t come to mind that the first Christians were forced to hide their faith and to lead their worshipping in secret places, where, at most, they could use secret symbols incomprehensible to their enemies. However they too gathered the remains of the early martyrs, who were to become saints, and respected and venerated them as objects of worship.

Many ancient and modern religions are iconoclastic, or condemn the worship of images: thinking of Islam, which forbids the depiction of the image of Muhammad, but also Protestantism, which once condemned and decreed the destruction of many statues and pictures present in Catholic churches.

Even the Bible condemns idolatry, and many passages of Sacred Scripture forbid the construction of statues and images, though such condemnation is directed only to the representation of pagan gods. The Bible forbids idolatry, and not the creation of images for the worship and veneration of the one, true God. In fact, in other scriptures, God Himself ordered men to show their devotion by making statues and objects of veneration.

The use of sacred images, the worship of statues of the Virgin Mary Jesus or the saints is thus not contrary to the teachings of the Bible. Indeed, it is somehow the heritage of those first signs of devotion, compassion and love brought by early Christians to those remains of martyrs.

It was the Council of Nicaea in 787 that formalized and consecrated the use of sacred images. It was given to them the same level of sacredness given to the cross, and therefore the right to be used in churches, during celebrations or as an object of veneration by the faithful, in private homes and public places.

As established by the Council, sacred images could be painted, made in the form of mosaics, carved, woven, provided that they: “are images of the Lord God and Savior Jesus Christ, or the Immaculate Our Lady, the Holy Mother of God, the Saint Angels, the saints and the righteous. ”

The veneration of sacred images evolved over the centuries in many forms of popular devotion and has certainly contributed significantly to the spread of the Catholic religion in the world.

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The cult of Divine Mercy http://192.168.99.122/com/religious-items/cult-divine-mercy/ Tue, 16 May 2017 13:02:17 +0000 http://192.168.99.122/com/?p=342 The cult of Divine Mercy started rather late. It was a cult started by Maria Faustina Kowalska, a Polish nun canonized in 2000 by Pope John Paul II. A member of the Congregation of the Sisters of Our Virgin Mary of Mercy, Sister Faustina showed […]

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The cult of Divine Mercy started rather late. It was a cult started by Maria Faustina Kowalska, a Polish nun canonized in 2000 by Pope John Paul II.

A member of the Congregation of the Sisters of Our Virgin Mary of Mercy, Sister Faustina showed mystical qualities since very young age. Her diary contains many dialogues that took place over the years between her and God. Thanks to this this connection with the Lord, in addition to graces, revelations, visions, stigmata and numerous other gifts to raise her to the role of Saint.

The cult of Divine Mercy started from a vision Sister Faustina had in 1931: Jesus appeared in his cell dressed in white, with one hand raised in blessing and the other resting on his chest, from which two protruding shining rays: one pale and the other red.

Jesus explained that the pale ray represented the Water which represents the souls, and the red the blood, which is life.

The Lord ordered her to paint Him in this way and make sure the image was revered around the world. He also said that the celebration during which the image was to be blessed should take place on the first Sunday after Easter. Pope John Paul II canonized Faustina, and decreed that the Feast of Divine Mercy was to be celebrated every year on that date.

In another appearance, Jesus dictated Sister Faustina the Chaplet of Divine Mercy, a devotional prayer that gives special favors to those reciting it, in particular the promise of a peaceful death. Even the worst sinners reciting once the Chaplet of Divine Mercy can find in it the last lifeline and the forgiveness of all sins. The prayer of the Divine Mercy is a heartfelt plea to Jesus, a merciful Father, ready to welcome at any time in His embrace the suffering children, ready to pick up and comfort all their troubles.

Simply recite the Chaplet of Divine Mercy to find relief from worries and a new intimate and profound joy to face life with.

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Christian symbols and their meanings http://192.168.99.122/com/religious-items/christian-symbols-meanings/ Thu, 11 May 2017 13:01:23 +0000 http://192.168.99.122/com/?p=339 The main idea of Christian religious symbolism was born from the desire to idolize banned images in early Christianity and the need to hide this worship. The early Christians had to resort to symbolic representations, signs, abstract forms like the cross, the stylized fish, in […]

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The main idea of Christian religious symbolism was born from the desire to idolize banned images in early Christianity and the need to hide this worship. The early Christians had to resort to symbolic representations, signs, abstract forms like the cross, the stylized fish, in order to feed their devotion and hide from their persecutors. In some cases, ancient symbols already existed, though their meaning was completely different for them.

Here is a list of some ancient Christian symbols:

  • JHS or Trigram (ìJЙΣ in Greek alphabet), which is used to shorten the name ΙΗΣΟΥΣ (“Iesous”, Jesus).
  • Icpescehthys, the stylized fish used by early Christians. Ichthys is the Latin transliteration of the Greek word ἰχθύς, “fish.” For Christians it became the acronym for Ιησοῦς Χριστός Θεoῦ Υιός Σωτήρ (Iesùs CHristòs  THeù HYiòs Sotèr), or “Jesus Christ Son of Savior God”
  • Chi Rho is the monogram of Christ, made by the superposition of the first two Greek letters of Christ’s name, X and P
  • The dove, sweet and gentle animal, always been a symbol of purity and innocence, becomes a symbol of the Holy Spirit.
  • Alpha and Omega: first and last letters of the Greek alphabet means that Christ is the beginning and the end of everything according to a quote from the Apocalypse.

There is no doubt that many Christian symbols and religious traditions of Christianity have their origins in ancient rites and symbols belonging to ancient religions and pagan cults. However, beyond words and symbols, it is crucial to analyze the way these rites and symbols were used, and the meaning given to them.

Some symbols, removed from a specific context, can take on a completely new and different meaning from the initial one. Unlike words or signs, drawings or objects, which represent exactly what they mean, symbols combine two realities, the effective representation and its conventional meaning, that can change from context to context.

Let’s analyze for example the symbol of the eye inside the triangle, which symbolizes the divine providence of God and the Trinity: that symbol is also used elsewhere, for instance in Freemasonry; or the inverted cross, which refers to the martyrdom of Pietro the Apostle, crucified upside down, but it is now often associated with satanic cults as well.

Talking about the cross, its meaning has changed dramatically overtime: for the Romans it was a symbol of shame and ignominious death, used for torture and execution, while in the New Testament, being it associated to the Passion and Resurrection of Jesus, it has become a symbol of salvation and eternal life.

Even many Christian symbols related to Christmas have pagan origins, though they should be analyzed in the right context. Christmas coincides with the winter solstice, a date traditionally linked to several ancient cults devoted to Sun and Light. In the Old Testament, the next coming of Jesus was announced as a renewal of the qualities of light and sun. The symbolism of light is therefore always connected with Christ. The Light: the Fire that burns the evil and dispels darkness, and purifies; the Sun, which gives new energy, fertility and fecundity. All this comes together, from a Christian perspective, in the figure of Jesus the Savior.

The rite of the mistletoe started during the Celtic area. It is a parasite plant, which sprouts and grows on the branch of another. In the Christian community it has been linked to the figure of Jesus, not raised like all other men, but a guest of humanity.

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The origins of Easter http://192.168.99.122/com/religious-items/the-origins-of-easter/ Tue, 09 May 2017 13:00:16 +0000 http://192.168.99.122/com/?p=336 Easter is perhaps the most important of Christian holidays. Present in all practices, it reminds and celebrates the Resurrection of Jesus. Its origins are lost in time and its reminiscences and rites remind not only of the Jewish Easter, but also of ancient pagan cults. […]

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Easter is perhaps the most important of Christian holidays. Present in all practices, it reminds and celebrates the Resurrection of Jesus. Its origins are lost in time and its reminiscences and rites remind not only of the Jewish Easter, but also of ancient pagan cults. Thinking about the meanings connected to eggs or Easter bunnies, which are certainly symbols used to celebrate the return of spring, hence the name of the festivity.

The English name of Easter may derive from that of Eostre or Ostara, a pagan deity linked to the cult of spring and fertility, or Ishtar, mother and wife of Tammuz, an ancient Babylonian god, whom she brought back to life after death. To celebrate his resurrection, more than 2000 years before the birth of Christ, homes used to be decorated with flowers and image of bunnies and eggs painted and then hid for the children to find, who would eat typical sweets as well.

The pagan cults around the world have plenty of celebrations of death and resurrection, often associated with the ones dedicated to fertility. It is therefore possible that Easter, as we know it and celebrate it, has deep pagan roots.

As for the biblical tradition, it’s rather interesting that in Scriptures there is no mention of the celebration of Resurrection. Easter is mentioned, though understood as Passover, or Pesach (pasa ‘in Aramaic), commemorating the freedom of the Jews from Egypt. The sacrifice of the lambs reminds of the signs drawn with blood on the Israelites’ doors, so that the angel of death sent by God would spare their firstborn, and kill the Egyptians’. In the Christian Easter Jesus, the Lamb of God, replaces the lamb of the Old Testament. By eating bread and wine, the body and blood of Christ, Christians renew the sacrifice of the Lamb in springtime, instilling in it a new and deeper meaning.

Even the Lent may be inspired by pagan traditions. A period of forty days of abstinence is present in cults of various pagan gods such as Osiris, Adonis and Tammuz.

Easter eggs may come from the cult of fertility in ancient civilizations. Eggs were hung in Egyptian temples as a symbol of life and offered in sacrifice in Egypt, China and Babylon to celebrate the spring season, representing terrestrial and celestial rebirth. For Christians the eggs are the stone tomb from which Jesus rises to new life.

The Easter Bunny ultimately comes from the traditions of the pre-Christian fertility. It has no real religious symbolism, but has over time become a symbol of Easter, especially for children.

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