During the discipline of Lent we slowly died within our sacred liturgical rites. At Easter we spring back to light and life, released from the bonds of bad habits, fortified by chosen penances, renewed in mercy’s tribunal, the confessional. Now we celebrate our victory in our union with the Victor King who triumphed in His duel with death. Christ rose. We too can rise.
The Ordinary Form Collect for the Easter Mass during the day has ancient roots in the Gelasian Sacramentary: “Deus, qui hodierna die, per Unigenitum tuum, aeternitatis nobis aditum, devicta morte, reserasti, da nobis, quaesumus, ut, qui resurrectionis dominicae sollemnia colimus, per innovationem tui Spiritus in lumine vitae resurgamus.”
Current translation: “O God, who on this day, through your Only Begotten Son, have conquered death and unlocked for us the path to eternity, grant, we pray, that we who keep the solemnity of the Lord’s Resurrection may, through the renewal brought by your Spirit, rise up in the light of life.”
That language of opening, unsealing, unlocking (reserasti) echoes in my imagination as the sound of the seals placed on the tomb by the Romans snapping with loud cracks before the stone rolled aside.
Speaking of opening, where I am, spring is on the verge of springing. Winter is pretty cold and dead around these parts.
We denizens of the north look forward to longer daylight, warm rain rather than sleet and snow, new grass peeking up amid the brown remains of last year, and the first daffodils and sprigs of wheat in the fields. The earth had its Lent too.
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