Monday, April 13, 2009

It's still Easter!

Don't you love the whole idea of the Easter octave--that every day from now through Sunday is still Easter? Pope John Paul wrote a wonderful document called "The Eighth Day" (Octava Dies) that is in a way written in this "mode." The very first Easter, falling as it did on the day after the Sabbath, the day of the Lord's "rest" (his Holy Saturday "rest" in the tomb, as it turns out), was not just another "first day of the week," but the eighth day of creation: the first day of a new creation. And so every Sunday we observe not so much a Sabbath of rest (although we are expected to rest from our own works in order to better rejoice in God's) as we observe and give thanks for the new creation that has already begun. By going to Mass on this day, we make a concrete act of faith and anticipation in the Second Coming (already "here" in the Eucharist).
Here in community we are still talking about our experience of the Eastern liturgy for Easter, even proposing that we do this again next year, and the next... I'm right there with them for that. The funny thing is, I really did not, not, not want to go! I wanted to go to Mount Carmel and sing the "Hallelujah Chorus" and "Jesus Christ is Ris'n Today." But two of the sisters really wanted to go, and one of the sisters kind of wanted to, so the community made that choice. I still didn't really want to go on Easter morning. But as soon as I stepped foot in that incredible little church, I was taken. Now I'm thinking of other feast days when they might pull out all the liturgical stops.


Regina Terrae said...

Sister Anne, I hosted 24 family members for Easter dinner yesterday -- on 3.5 hours sleep having gone to a wonderful Vigil mass -- so I am thrilled that it's still Easter. I couldn't focus on the holiday itself at all yesterday!

And what's even better, even after the octave is over, it's still Easter all the way up to Pentecost! 7 weeks of Easter, yay! Alleluia! Alleluia!

J.T. said...

One of the joys of having the octave is it gives time to those of us who worked in our parishes to make the Triduum happen some time to recover, reflect and rejoice. Love it!