Long gone are the days when on the first of May, we’d take a colorful cupcake holder, twist a pipe cleaner handle on it, place a stick of gum, two small pieces of candy and a lilac bloom in the “little basket,” put it outside the door of a classmate’s home, knock
hard and run off, so we wouldn’t get caught and kissed.
That’s the way we remember making and delivering May Baskets five decades ago. Maybe it wasn’t quite that way, but somewhat similar. Don’t know if the custom has continued, because we don’t seem to hear anything of such happenings nowadays.
Irregardless, May Day will still be celebrated around the world, although many really don’t understand its significance.
Celebrations began shortly after The Resurrection, with spring rituals connected to fertility and growth. It has survived in various forms with ancient Rome honoring the goddess of spring, Flora.
In the 15th century, festivities were celebrated with dances around the Maypole and were also tied to the figure of Robin Hood, whom youths impersonated in dances and drama performances.
International Workers’ Day is a May Day holiday in almost 70 counties, started in the late 19th century recognizing markedly improved treatment and conditions for laborers.
Today, traditional May Day celebrations are a hodgepodge of Maypole dancing, parties, worker’s demonstrations and parades, often prominently displaying military strength.
Abundant moisture has turned the grass into a flowing emerald green, and newborns are everywhere from the bird nest, to the rabbit den, to the cow and horse pastures. It is indeed time to celebrate God’s blessings of fertility, growth and the opportunity to have fruitful employment.
We must be ready to take on projects that others would overlook or discard. First Thessalonians 4:11advises: “And that ye study to be quiet, and to do your own business, and to work with your own hands, as we commanded you.”
With spring’s kickoff, all things are set to prosper. St. Luke 21:30-31 recognizes:“When they now shoot forth, ye see and know of your own selves that summer is now nigh at hand. So likewise, ye, when ye see these things come to pass, know ye that the kingdom of God is nigh at hand.”