After weeks of waiting and preparation, Easter is upon us. For me Easter means the arrival of spring, no matter how long ago the actual first day of Spring may have been…
(Easter always falls on the first Sunday after the first full moon after the first day of spring – a connection to a time when the lunar and solar calendars were used in conjunction to mark and measure our activities and time. Memorize this fact and amaze your friends at parties…)
For the six weeks before Easter we have tried to live simply and honestly in the anticipation of Easter and what it represents to us as a catholic family. This season of lent can seem long – it is an opportunity to contemplate the many gifts we have in our lives, as well as the responsibility we have to use these gifts for their best purpose.
My daughter (a list person like her mother) dutifully checked off the days as they passed. We have talked about prayer and sacrifice of course, but the greatest gift of Lent for me is the waiting. It is forced, organized, lengthy waiting. It is a symbol of life’s journey. We live and breathe and contemplate our daily struggles. Some days are long. Some days are really long. But then one day, one day after all that waiting, suddenly – it’s Easter.
(This last picture is my favourite. My daughter stuck it on the fridge this afternoon and I thought it was outrageously funny because it said “holy – ish”. It turns out it actually says “holy is he” – silly me.)
This year my littlest one has a whole new role to play. He is going to school now and learning about all our faith traditions on his own. It is inspiring for the rest of us when he shares (with great conviction) his own understanding of the Lenten journey…
Part of what makes this life/lent journey so meaningful is sharing it with each other. We are not made to journey alone.
In other words:
“We are each of us angels with only one wing, and we can only fly by embracing one another.” (Luciano De Crescenzo)
So what are all these eggs and bunnies about? Renewal? Rebirth? Second chances?
Ultimately, for me, they are images if hope. They are a reminder that even after long, dark, difficult days there will be spring. The greatest images of hope I have are the sticky hands and faces of my children, believing completely in the joy and beauty and potential of tomorrow!
And finally – a poem…
The silver trumpets rang across the Dome:
The people knelt upon the ground with awe:
And borne upon the necks of men I saw,
Like some great God, the Holy Lord of Rome.
Priest-like, he wore a robe more white than foam,
And, king-like, swathed himself in royal red,
Three crowns of gold rose high upon his head:
In splendour and in light the Pope passed home.
My heart stole back across wide wastes of years
To One who wandered by a lonely sea,
And sought in vain for any place of rest:
“Foxes have holes, and every bird its nest,
I, only I, must wander wearily,
And bruise my feet, and drink wine salt with tears.” (Oscar Wilde)
Happy Easter to you! Wishing the hope and joy of new life find their way to your door…