How wonderfully the Church helps us to journey through and experience some of the fullness of the redemption in the Easter Triduum.
The silence of the altar of repose as you pray with Our Lord in the Garden of Gethsemani, waiting for His passion, whilst the disciples slept; night prayers whilst this part of the world sleeps; what a good time to be praying. No wonder the monastic orders have used this time for centuries.
The ageless chant of morning prayer; the shock of the stations of the cross, and the horrors we subjected Jesus to, whilst all the time He never complained; the Celebrant prostrating himself at the altar steps at the hour of Our Lord's death; the reading of the Passion; the congregation queuing to kiss the Crucifix; the silent retirement from Church when the liturgy is over, leaving the crucifix standing alone in the middle of the altar, the sign of the greatest act of love ever; to be loved in return and adored in silence.
Silence permeates the whole day; the ageless chant of morning prayer and the ancient Holy Saturday readings; the cross standing silently in the middle of the altar, Christ's love present to us all, to be genuflected to and adored in silence.
The Easter Vigil
The new fire, the Christ candle illuminating our procession back to the church, the Old Testament readings - a prefigurement of what was to come; the bells at the Gloria, the white vestments, the flowers, the controlled joy in the church and outside after the vigil service is over.
The Mass at Dawn
The packed church, the gentle hum of anticipation, the freshness of the day, the sheer joy of the liturgy, the people quietly queuing for the Eucharist,
The flower decked church, the candle lit altar, the brilliant white vestments, the reading from the Acts, the joy at being in Easter week, and of 50 days of celebration.
Christ is risen. Alleluia! Alleluia! Alleluia!
Labels: Easter, Liturgy