The days of Easter have been full ones with feasting and guests, cooking and decorating. I scrounged around for the Alleluia to put in a place of prominence in front of the lily and hyacinths after coming home from the Easter Vigil. It is just a stained piece of wood with a section of an Easter card glued onto the front. Simple but beautiful.
To help make Lent real for Tim we “buried” the Alleluia on Ash Wednesday and then “resurrected” it after the Easter Vigil. So, in addition to the liturgical significance it is a sweet reminder of Tim and the days when he and his brothers were all around the table.
The whole Triduum, but especially the liturgy of Holy Saturday, has become an experience that I treasure more and more with each year that passes. This time it was the singing of the Exultet that gripped me around the heart. Our Polish priest sang in the darkened church, his accent giving the chant almost a Middle-Eastern sounding emphasis, his words slow and distinct so we could grasp each one as it was intoned.
Exult, let them exult, the hosts of heaven, exult, let Angel ministers of God exult, let the trumpet of salvation sound aloud our mighty King’s triumph! Be glad, let the earth be glad, as glory floods her, ablaze with light from her eternal King, let all corners of the earth be glad, knowing an end to gloom and darkness.
How can one hang onto even a thread of sadness when, with candles held aloft, we are so encouraged? I remember the first Vigil after Tim’s death and the great surge of joy I felt as the first Alleluia was sung and I felt his presence beside me singing out his Alleluia. How could it not be a night of joy when
The sanctifying power of this night dispels wickedness, washes faults away, restores innocence to the fallen, and joy to mourners…
The octave is past now but we have the whole of Eastertide to bring our gift of joy to the Lord. So may we all put aside the gloom and sadness and revel in the glory of the Risen Christ.