It is good that April 1st has fallen during holy week this year. Many people are unaware that the celebration of April Fool’s Day was orginally an integral part of the Christian calendar, always falling in between Palm Sunday and Good Frday. But debates about and modifications to the date of Easter have broken the connection, leading to much misunderstanding.
April Fool’s Day originally commemorated the occasion when, approximately 1,980 years ago, Jesus described the end of the world and then told the disciples “I tell you the truth, this generation will certainly not pass away until all these things have happened” (Mark 13:30).
Apparently even today there are people who still don’t get that he was kidding. But clearly this was an April Fool’s Day joke, and quite possibly the first ever.
Restoring the connection between April Fool’s Day and Holy Week would help many more people understand that when Jesus spoke of returning on clouds within the lifetime of his hearers, he was clearly kidding, and thus this matrial should not be used in Christian theology – or at least, not in versions of Christian theology which are meant to be taken seriously rather than as attemt humor.