A Catholic Convert in Ottawa

Keeping the Feast

Posted on: March 28, 2013

For many people, celebrating Easter weekend means taking a few days’ break from work or school. Maybe it also means watching children hunt for foil-wrapped chocolate eggs and gathering with family to share a dinner of ham or lamb. But the celebration doesn’t go any deeper than that.

I know that my family enjoys the long weekend, the egg hunt and the family meal. But as Christians, Easter means so much more to us.

As Pat Gohn writes in a February/March 2013 Catholic Digest column on the Year of the Faith, “If we pay attention, we see that the Church keeps celebrating the joy of the Resurrection long after the Easter candy is gone.”

Especially in this Year of the Faith, when we’re encouraged to become more familiar with the Catechism, it’s worth reading sections 595 to 658 to learn more about Holy Week and the meaning of the events that unfolded.

Pat Gohn’s column also reminds us of what the Catechism has to say about Easter in s. 1169:

Therefore Easter is not simply one feast among others, but the ‘Feast of feasts’, the ‘Solemnity of solemnities’, just as the Eucharist is the ‘Sacrament of sacraments’ (the Great Sacrament).

And so we turn from the penitential time of Lent to the joyful Easter season.

Some of us will find it hard to celebrate because we’re struggling with illness or loss of one kind or another. My family is grieving the loss this week of our beloved cat Loki, who was part of our family for over fifteen years. But as I wrote in my recent post, “Joy in Our Hearts,” while we’re not happy now, we can still find joy in our faith.

This weekend, with Christians around the world, we will hear anew how the disciples mourned the death of the Lord on the cross and rejoiced at his triumphing over death by his resurrection. We will sing and proclaim, “Alleluia!” We will rejoice in the knowledge that Jesus rose from the dead and is preparing a place for us.

May we echo the words of the apostle Paul:

I have been crucified with Christ; it is no longer I who live, but Christ who lives in me; and the life I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me. (Galatians 2:20, Holy Bible, Revised Standard Version, Second Catholic Edition)

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Food for Thought

(Y)ou do not know about tomorrow. What is your life? For you are a mist that appears for a little time and then vanishes. Instead you ought to say, “If the Lord wills, we shall live and we shall do this or that.” ~ James 4:14-15

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