The necessary day…..

Can you imagine transitioning from the crescendo of grief and sorrow ushered in on Holy Thursday night, which found its full expression in the Commemoration of the Lord’s Passion on Good Friday, and then plunging oneself into the Glory and Joy of Easter the very next day?

Would it not be a shock to leave the foot of the Cross and enter almost immediately into the Gloria in Excelsis Deo, bells ringing, Paschal Candle, Fragrant Lilies, Christ is Risen?

How wise of Our Lord to give us this day of silence. This strangely calm day when the tabernacle is empty, the adoration chapels are closed, our churches are abandoned except for those preparing decorations for Easter splendor tomorrow. In some places, confessions may be heard. But for the most part, all is quiet.

Perhaps in the emptiness, one can better experience the reality of a world without Jesus Christ. He is, after all, lying in the tomb today…not preaching, not suffering, not dying, not rising, not ascending, not yet reigning in Glory. He is essentially absent from our midst. Even yesterday, we could receive Him in Holy Communion. Today, He is not here..something to think about.

Not until sundown tonight, not until Easter Vigil will He once again dwell among us in His Flesh and Blood, His Glorious Humanity.

I have always been delighted that Jesus was not dead for 72 hours or what we consider three full days. Actually, His time in the tomb was much shorter than that. I love to meditate on the idea that He Who is Life could scarcely be held back from rising again, as quickly as possible to His New Life…which He promises to us as well.

But I am grateful for Holy Saturday…..the day of anticipation.

On this “necessary day,” may that anticipation ever rise in our hearts, preparing us for the ecstasy of that soon to come Eucharistic Embrace of our Risen Jesus.

And like the disciples on the road to Emmaus, may our hearts truly burn within us.

But for now, we wait…..

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12 thoughts on “The necessary day…..

    • Happy Easter, Lisa! We don’t have to wait anymore!!! I hope that you and your family had a most Blessed and Joyful celebration of Our Lord’s Resurrection!

      Hope those girls of yours ate plenty of Easter eggs….no diets today 🙂 (Still remembering you comment about them…when I had the stomach virus) LOL.
      xoxo

  1. Patricia,
    Holy Saturday really is a necessary day. It is hard to not get ahead of Jesus in our anticipation of Easter, but as you so beautifully reflected, it is needed. I love the Easter Vigil, and I rest a little easier when I see Jesus back where we need Him to be in the tabernacle.
    I have two very special Easter privileges/gifts: one is I help our Perpetual Adoration coordinator set the chapel up for Jesus’ return or as I usually refer to it, The Return of the King. The other is that my hour of Adoration is at midnight Sundays so my Easter hour I always feel a little like Mary Magdalen running to the tomb 🙂
    Have a joyous and blessed Easter!

    • Karin…what wonderful gifts the King has given you! That is so special…preparing the adoration chapel for His return. And..having a holy hour at midnight on Easter. I love when my Tuesday adoration falls on Christmas, like it did this past year, but that only happens rarely. You get to be Mary Magdalen every Easter 🙂

      I think Holy Saturday is a fascinating day. It’s part ot the Easter Triduum, so it’s not Lent. But yet, until the Easter Vigil, Jesus is sleeping. My sister and I went shopping, and it was strange not being able to stop by the adoration chapel on my way home. The King had not yet returned.

      Easter blessings and joy to you dear Karin! Enjoy your Holy Hour with our Risen Lord! Sending you a big Easter hug! 🙂

  2. Very well put Patricia, “necessary day.” I always try to imagine what the Blessed Mother did on this day, as well as the holy women and the apostles, who could not visit the tomb, etc because of the Sabbath. I spent part of the afternoon at a Catholic cemetery where my maternal grandmother is buried. Aside from visiting her grave, I like to walk around and enjoy the idyllic tranquility of those sacred grounds and look at some of the tombstones that are from another era. (I might post some of the photos I took on my own blog in the very near future) And as I make my way around, I pray for the Holy Souls entombed there, that if He hasn’t already, Christ might soon free their souls from their sequester in Purgatory. I thought of you today when, during my walk around Holy Cross, I came upon a row of flat, nondescript grave markers. I soon realized that these were the tombs of nuns who had once lived together in community. They each had French names, most of them of the saints but some of the Sacred Heart or the Epiphany, so I’m not sure what their order was/is, and the most recent burial took place in 2011. Many of the nuns buried in this plot were born in the 1800’s and were long gone. I said the name of each sister and then offered a prayer for the repose of her soul before moving on to the next grave. God knows when the last time anyone visited them was. I think this is the way I would like to spend Holy Saturday for the rest of my time, so long as I’m able. Anyway…I will be praying for you and all of our dear friends at the Easter Vigil tonight. Please remember me as well. Easter Joy to you and your family! Joyce

    • Joyce, what a lovely way to spend Holy Saturday. I was thinking of what you wrote this morning, and wondering if your prayers released some of these souls into Heaven for Easter. Wouldn’t that be wonderful! What a kind and merciful thing to do…praying for them.

      My husband and I love to visit old cemeteries too…especially those in church yards. it’s so interesting to read the markers…often so many babies and young children died. It is also a sobering thought…that we will all end up there someday in the not too distant future. And….after a little while, be forgotten. How lovely that you covered those souls with prayer yesterday! I hope someone like you comes along when I’m 6 feet under 🙂

      Happy Easter to you as well….I don’t want it to end! We had a nice day at our son’s house…a crawfish boil (yes, we eat them!) with just my sister and her boys and my daughter-in-law’s brother, wife and two children. Best gift…my son and his wife did go to Mass…..first time since Christmas! But thanks be to God, they are at least making an effort. Baby steps….guess mom here has to double the prayers, and be patient. Love and prayers to you, dear Joyce, on this Glorious Feast!

    • Nancy….I’ve been popping over to your blogs to enjoy the breathtaking art! Thank you! It’s Easter night now and getting late, but wanted to wish you a most Happy Easter and a beautiful week to come, as we continue to celebrate. xoxo

      He is Risen! Alleluia! The King of kings lives forever!

  3. In our church Jesus never leaves us. The tabernacle is never empty, the holy water fonts always have holy water and we don’t cover the crucifixes. On the other hand for some reason the Easter “vigil” was celebrated at 10 a.m. In the morning.

    • I’m trying to remember if Jesus was removed from the tabernacle before Vatican II. It’s so long ago; I really don’t know. Although I am sad to see the empty tabernacle on Good Friday, I must say that it does leave me with many thoughts of what life would be like without Jesus. What if He had never come, or had left and was never returning…if the tabernacle were always empty? It is very painful to think about. I’m grateful the Church allows us to receive Him in Holy Communion at Good Friday services though. What a great consolation that is!

      Churches around here generally don’t cover the crucifix or statues. When I was a child, I seem to remember they covered all of them, and I loved midnight Easter Mass (pre-Vatican II) when the bells were ringing and all the purple draping was removed. I can still see that in my mind. It was very impressive. Some of our churches remove the holy water during Lent, but they are NOT supposed to… Wish everyone would get their act together on these things! Love……

  4. Patricia,

    The necessary day. Yes! I must admit after Good Friday I felt so sunk down in sorrow, as if the world was all pain. Could joy really return in such a short time? But by Saturday afternoon I was anticipating the Vigil Mass. Just when we feel Jesus is so far away and will never again be with us, there He is back by our side! Such a quick turn-around.

    Hope you are enjoying the Easter season!

    • Sue, aren’t we so blessed to have the liturgical calendar in the Church? It is so lovely to journey through the life of Jesus as we move from month to month throughout the year. It is never so intense as during Holy Week though. I wasn’t emotional this year…as I’ve been dwelling in aridity for some time now. I often think how blessed we are that Jesus never really leaves us. He isn’t actually dead, as He was for those unbearable few days 2000 years ago. A world without Jesus…too awful to imagine!

      I love the joy of Easter everyday this week! 🙂 And…Divine Mercy Sunday this weekend. What a gift! God love you, dear Sue! xo

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