NORTHVILLE (WWJ) – Twice-a-year church-goers may wonder if they are getting a pass on service attendance this Easter. A billboard along I-275 in western Wayne County advising people to ‘skip church this Easter’ has a lot of people doing a double-take.

What’s the real message this church is sending?

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Prominently displayed on the road signs, answers the question.

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April Fools! This year the Easter holiday falls on Sunday, April 1.

“Of course, we want people to visit with us on Easter,” says Ward Senior Pastor Scott McKee. “Just as Jesus did some unexpected things after His resurrection, we thought something unexpected was appropriate. Easter being on April 1 gave us a way to do it.”

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It’s a gag that works only every few decades when Easter Sunday falls on April Fools’ Day. The last time that happened was in 1956. The next time will be in 2029.