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This evening begins the Easter Triduum—Holy Thursday, Good Friday, Holy Saturday, and Easter Sunday. (It looks like four days, but it’s three, trust me.) Reviewing the times for services this year, I was struck by the words “Church Closed” listed for certain times on Thursday and Saturday.
Last Saturday, our priest challenged us to approach Holy Week as if we didn’t know how it all ended. Imagine the confusion of the Apostles at the Last Supper. The grief of the cross on Good Friday. The emptiness of Holy Saturday. Imagine if we didn’t know that Easter Sunday was right around the corner. Even with faith that Jesus would return, that He would rise as He said, imagine not know how long it would take, or if you would live to see it.
Seeing “Church Closed” in the bulletin made those moments a little easier for me to contemplate. This year has been mostly joyful, but there have been moments when it’s been tough to believe that Jesus is at my side. That I’m doing the best I can, that I’m being who I’m meant to be. The Church is my home in a lot of ways. It’s where I find peace on a daily basis. It’s where I met my husband. It’s what I’m teaching my kids. It being closed, for even a few days, even though I know that it will reopen with a celebration of the most glorious day on the Church’s calendar, is like a little piece of me is absent.
This is what the disciples must have felt, but on a much larger scale. But then, we must have sorrow to have joy; we must have pain to be healed.
The Paschal Triduum starts tonight. May it be a time of fruitful prayer, patient waiting, and ultimately, overwhelming joy.