I TOLD YOU SO—I don’t get to say that very often. My watch says that on the day I write this, there are 12 hours and 4 minutes of daylight. This is up about an hour from when Lent began. I wrote here earlier that Easter’s date is set by the full moon after today’s Spring Equinox, when the earth in our hemisphere is tilted most directly to the sun. Life is indeed popping out all around us.
So can we be. This is the week of all weeks, to join Jesus in the pattern of his suffering, death and resurrection; this is the spirit of the whole week ahead of us. Whether you’ve had a good Lent, or feel like the season has passed you by this year, this week is your week—our week– to focus on, and walk with Jesus in, his death and resurrection. Today we enter Holy Week and the Sacred Easter Triduum, the Three Days.
Last year this was the Dark Week, so strange—the Easter days celebrated by just a few in church, everyone else watching a screen of some sort. This year we joyfully return as a congregation, at least many do, while others still watch from home. And this year still, there is no “obligation under church law” to attend these or other services. But a faithful group normally gathers each year, many for all three services.
There is no other time to experience the church’s life and beliefs so directly. Thursday in the Mass of the Lord’s Supper, Christ shows the spirit of love and service by the washing of feet. On Good Friday, we humbly receive the gift of his life. Saturday at the Easter Vigil, we “pull out all stops”
to celebrate in light, in word, in life-giving baptismal water, and food, the presence of the Risen Christ. We will renew our Baptism, especially by baptizing Long Duong; and we will receive bap- tized Christian Jessica Dorney. Each of the services is about an hour to an hour and a half. We must join Jesus closely somehow these days. Participating in these services is the prime way. Children especially enjoy the Triduum (three day) services, because symbols are used that are not our usual routine. If you can’t be with us for these services, find some way to unite with Jesus in his passage.
I’m already going into the mode of an annual Paschal Retreat. To experience the depth of these rich days, and especially to share The Word with you in preaching, Msgr. Blood and I will not be doing “business as usual” this week. Please hold off what can wait till Easter Tuesday. Please support us and our other ministers and staff in this, and join us in these services if possible. We’ll see what new spirit we have as we resume “usual business” in the long season after Easter.
One note on activities—Tuesday we hosted the West County Deanery Meeting of our area’s priests and deacons in our church and hall. We had a good meeting on the needs of the parishes. They were very grateful for the space and facilities. Special appreciation was given to Diann Bomkamp and her helpers Vicki Westall, Patti Kimzey, and Cecilia Lause for putting on a good reception and meal.
I’m very grateful to them for doing our parish’s work as hosts.