In a recent appearance, Pope Francis publicly announced that he would be open to the selection of a common date for all Christian denominations to celebrate Easter on the same day.
Although this may be seen as a harmless and practical move for some, others completely disagree with the proposal.
Well-known Russian theologian Protodeacon Andrey Kurayev took to the internet to express his thoughts on the matter, describing the suggestion as “prospectless” and “unrealistic”.
“The Pope’s proposal to designate a single all-Christian Easter day is unrealistic,” wrote Father Andrey on his blog.
“For the Catholics, the Pope’s decision is self-sufficient, whereas the Orthodox Christians are still tied by their tradition, or to be more precise, the decision of the First Ecumenical Council [in 325 AD].”
Though many remain uncertain as to why the resurrection is celebrated on different dates, there is a reason that stems back thousands of years.
Each denomination follows one of two calendars, Orthodox Christians having adopted the Julian and the Catholics follow the Gregorian.
With Easter celebrated on spring’s equinox day, the date naturally changes from year to year making it a moveable holiday.
Earlier this year Neos Kosmos conducted a poll, asking our readers whether they would prefer that Greek Easter coincide with the Catholic holiday, with 56 per cent voting for it to remain unchanged.
Pope Francis is not the first to propose the idea of a common date.
Pope John Paul II also put forward a similar suggestion, while in 1965 the Second Vatican Council also offered Christians the option to celebrate Easter on the second Sunday of April.
Although the Greek Orthodox Church has yet to release an official comment regarding the matter, based on the conference of Orthodox churches in Moscow in 1948 that ruled Easter and all other movable feasts must be in accordance with the Julian Calendar, it is predicted the church will not agree.
Neos Kosmos has contacted the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of Australia for comment.