April Fools!

By: Deacon Marques Silva

April Fools’ Day is a favorite in my house. The kids and I have always enjoyed playing pranks and poking a little fun at each other. As they grew, the pranks became far more intricate and thus required advanced planning. Is it bad that we sometimes go shopping to prepare for this day? Anyway, a few years ago the inevitable happened. Our youngest asked: “How did April Fools’ Day get started?” I, of course, replied: “Umm, no clue son. Let me research.”

april-fools-day-1-coloring-pageEventually, I stumbled across the answer in the good ‘ole Catholic Source Book – and as always, it was enlightening. Turns out that it is Jewish tradition that we have inherited:

“Tradition has it that April 1 is April Fools’ Day because it was on this day that Noah sent doves from the ark to check for dry land before the flood had completely abated. (Actually, it was the first of Nisan, the first month of the Jewish year and roughly equivalent to our April.) This first dispatch, of course, was a wild goose chase, to use a fowl metaphor. Even though Noah might object to the implication that he was just fooling, the doves’ frustrated mission is commemorated in the April Fools’ tricks of today.”[1]

There you have it. And now, I need to go prepare for a few more pranks. Nota bene: If you are going to use glow tape to form the outline of a body on your kid’s floor in the middle of the night — and accidentally wake them up — using an LED light to charge the tape provides the best results. Enjoy yourself and have a little fun this Lent!


[1] Klein, Rev. Peter, The Catholic Source Book (Harcourt Religion Publishers, 2000) p. 349

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