Saturday, March 26, 2016

Reflection: Luke 24:1-12

March 26th, 2016 – Luke 24:1-12

Holy Saturday is the day in between Good Friday and Easter Sunday.  Eucharist is not celebrated on Holy Saturday morning although some churches may have a Morning Prayer service. Liturgically speaking, Holy Saturday officially ends at dusk.  After dusk, the Easter Vigil is celebrated. The Easter Vigil is a lengthy but an extremely rich celebration.  It is one of the most solemn celebrations of the liturgical year.  In the past 40 days, we have journeyed through Lent.  On this Holy Saturday evening, our Lenten journey culminates with the Resurrection of Jesus Christ.  The Easter Vigil has 3 integral parts: the blessing of the fire and the preparation and lighting of the Easter candle; The Liturgy of the Word; and The Baptismal Liturgy.

The Holy Saturday service is solemn and lengthy. However, it is rich with word, action, hope, and new life.  This service begins with the ritual of blessing of the new fire and the preparation and lighting of the Easter candle.  After the Easter candle has been lit, it is lifted high and is carried into the Church.  The community gathers around the baptismal font and the Exultet is sung (the ancient hymn the Israelites sang as they praised the God who led them out of Egypt and into freedom). On this holy night, the readings re-tell the stories of our salvation.

Holy Saturday does not simply commemorate what God has done in previous times.  Holy Saturday also celebrates what God is doing today.  It is true that Jesus saved us by dying on the cross over 2,000 years ago.  However, God is at work in our lives today.  Salvation still is in process!

Today, let us ask ourselves: Will we enter deeply into this Easter mystery and miracle? Yes, Jesus did die for us and He rose for us.  Are we willing to wholeheartedly enter into the life, death, and resurrection of Jesus?  What will we decide?

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