Easter celebrations were held hundreds of years before Christ was born as festivals of spring honoring Eostre, the great mother goddess of the Saxons. This name was fashioned after the ancient word for spring, Easter.
The goddess Ostara was the Norse equivalent whose symbols were the hare and the egg. From this comes our modern tradition of celebrating Easter with eggs and bunnies.
Pope Gregory the Great ordered his missionaries to use old religious sites and festivals and absorb them into Christian rituals where possible.
The Easter sunrise service is derived from the ancient pagan practice of welcoming the sun on the morning of the spring equinox, marking the beginning of spring.
The ancient Babylonian religions had rituals involving dyed eggs, as did the ancient Egyptians.
The Christian version of Easter is celebrated after the first full moon after the vernal equinox.The pagan rituals were celebrating the birth of spring.
The green grass symbols in Easter baskets, pastel hued painted eggs, marshmallow bunnies, all symbolize the advent of Spring.