A Moveable Feast

March 28, 2024 by Sherry Elliott

Easter greetings from The Upper Room staff. Christ is risen indeed! 

Easter took me by surprise this year. It arrived much too early, before the dogwood trees bloomed and not long after daylight saving time. This happens on occasion because Easter is observed on the first Sunday after the paschal full moon. This is the first full moon on or after March 21, the spring equinox, according to Wikipedia. Unlike Christmas, Easter Sunday changes its date from year to year and is known as the “moveable feast” on the Christian church’s liturgical calendar. 

Interestingly, I did not learn about the “moveable feast” in church but instead while sitting inside an American literature class. Ernest Hemingway’s memoir, A Moveable Feast, details his life in Paris during the 1920s, surrounded by a fascinating community of writers and artists. His widow posthumously published the memoir and titled it as such, when she recalled this line he wrote in a letter to a friend: 

“If you are lucky enough to have lived in Paris as a young man, then wherever you go for the rest of your life, it stays with you, for Paris is a moveable feast.” 

I imagine Hemingway is referring to those life-changing experiences that stay with us forever—those remembrances of people, places, and events that resurrect us, the ones we can call forth easily and bring back to life. Such remembrances will transport us to a particular place and time and renew our souls, like Easter Sunday when we celebrate the open tomb, resurrection, and new life in Christ. 

My time at The Upper Room has offered more “moveable feast” moments than I can count. I was lucky enough to go on a recent trip to South Korea and Thailand to meet up, face-to-face, with our dedicated publishing partners who help us print and distribute The Upper Room devotional guide throughout Asia. Their stories of labor, faith, and dedication are awe-inspiring. Equally inspiring was my participation in a Walk to Emmaus weekend and the Two-Year Academy. (Shout-out to Academy #41 friends who gathered in Camp Sumatanga, Alabama.) 

Friends, thank you for all the ways you stay with us and bring us to life. Your readership, participation in our programs, and ongoing abundant support encourage us daily and give us confidence that we are focused on the right thing: providing transformative content and experiences, “moveable feasts,” if you will, that invite people to create daily life with God. 

Let us be Easter people together. Amen. 

Sherry Elliott is the Executive Director of Administration, Interpretation, and Development at The Upper Room. 

This article first appeared in the Easter 2024 Fellowship Focus newsletter for friends and donors of The Upper Room. Click the image below to view the complete newsletter.

Journal Prompts

What personal or communal traditions help you connect with the deeper meaning of Easter each year? 

In what tangible ways can you cultivate ‘moveable feast’ moments in your community, fostering spaces of joy and transformation? 

How can you actively engage with the renewing spirit of this season to inspire change within and around you?

Share your responses with others in the comments below!

Log In to leave a comment