Easter and the promise of new life

By Maria V. Gallagher, Legislative Director, Pennsylvania Pro-Life Federation

Easter was a huge cause for celebration in the family in which I was born. My mother made intense preparations in the days leading up to the Resurrection of Jesus. She would make sure each of her little girls had a special occasion dress (and sometimes a matching coat) and a straw hat and, of course, the all-important patent leather shoes.

My father contributed a corsage for his two daughters and our mother, and the scent of those flowers lingers with me. We definitely made a sartorial impression when we entered the church to attend services. 

Easter baskets were overflowing masterpieces filled with not only chocolates, but sometimes jewelry, and, in one memorable case, what I had given up for Lent—a two-liter bottle of cola.

Another highlight of the day was the Easter dinner—often a buffet of ham and roast beef and a delectable dessert. Life was sweet—and all the sweeter at Easter.

Our celebrations as a family, at Easter and other occasions, meant the world to us. My parents knew how to celebrate in style, making the most of the moment.

While my parents have now passed on, I am grateful to them for not only the wisdom they imparted to me about the importance of family. I am also eternally indebted to them for my very life.

I was the result of a surprise pregnancy. When my mother discovered very early in her marriage that she was pregnant with me, she and my father were facing incredibly difficult financial times.

Yet together, they welcomed me with open, inviting arms—along with my sister, who came onto the scene two years later.

This Easter, in their memory, I will celebrate Easter with abandon, knowing that the holiday represents the best of family, and the promise of new life.