At Old South Church, steps away from the Marathon finish line, dozens of runners tearfully accepted blessings and handmade blue-and-yellow scarves during Sunday’s Easter services. Hundreds of people made pilgrimages to Boylston Street to take photos, to revel in the brilliant day, or to face memories from last year. And thousands of marathoners ended the day on City Hall Plaza, sharing a feast of pasta, meatballs, and beer.
On the day before the first Boston Marathon since the bombings, Boston was awash with sunshine and determination, even as memories of last year cast an occasional shadow on the city’s festive spirit.
Easter coincided with the most emotional Boston Marathon eve in the 118-year history of the celebrated event, and the Christian story of Jesus’ resurrection mirrored a sense of resilience.
“Easter is God’s tender, sweet, intimate whisper: ‘Don’t be afraid’ . . . ” the Rev. Nancy S. Taylor, senior minister of Old South, said to the hundreds of people — many sporting 2013 and 2014 Boston Marathon jackets — who packed into Old South Church for the first of two Easter services that included blessings for those running on Monday.
As light streamed in through stained-glass windows, Taylor asked runners in this year’s Marathon to rise. They were greeted with a resounding applause.
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