Once again, we hear this beautiful and most solemn strain! Like an outburst, it lifts us up to the realm where God reigns triumphantly. It is a victory song of the great assembly in heaven before the throne of the exalted Lord (Rev. 19).
We are truly an Easter people!
Easter is, however, a momentous experience beyond human words! Even those who were first witnesses did not manage too well to explain in words what that event was, that so completely changed their lives and their perceptions.
We, too, in Holy Eucharist and community also eat and drink with the risen Christ are hard pressed to give an account of the hope that is in us, and the basis of that blissful hope.
The rich symbolism of the Easter Vigil (Creation Stories, Liberation, hope of the covenanted people) speaks powerfully enough with their symbolism. Thus, the kindling of new fire, blessing of water, the lighting of candles, the radiance of new garment (for those to be baptized), the haunting melody of the Exultet, the midnight timing – are all themselves so elegant, so powerful, we can pause and feel that Christ’ victory is indeed multivalent.
Easter symbolism is so rich that our Christian worship attains its highest form of recognizing God’s absolute transcendence as Creator-Redeemer savior.
Easter message is summed up in one word-life! Life, this profound, sacred, joyful, gracious, divine, peaceful, tender gift is nonetheless vulnerable. It is the law of life that life is poured out, unfinished, disrupted. Easter then becomes a promise of hope for everyone, who seek eternal life.
1. Easter is Jesus’ faithfulness to the Father.
Jesus was an impressive witness to God because he would not allow his heart to be put to death. It was not the torment of the body of Jesus but the aliveness of his heart which is the sign of his faithfulness. The sacrifice of Jesus thus becomes the bread and wine by which the spirit of man is nourished.
2. What is this life which Jesus gives in his Resurrection?
It is the life that comes from his blood. When the soldier pierced his heart with a lance, St. John wrote: “blood and water flows from his side.” The blood of Christ poured out to give us spiritual birth. We receive this at the fountain of the Church and Sacraments. There God pours out his substance. We are enlivened to seek out such grace in his life-giving word. Jesus poured out to us “a last supper of infinite sharing together with the empty loneliness of the cross and tomb”.
Happy Easter to all!
Maligayang Pasko ng Pagkabuhay!