Easter Sunday | The Resurrection of the Lord
The summit of the Triduum occurs at the Easter Vigil when we celebrate the core mystery of our faith: that we are saved from sin and death through the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ. These rites are meant not only to remind us of this mystery but also to insert us into the mystery and make us its bearers.
The Vigil begins in darkness, not unlike the darkness we experience from our sin and the sin of the whole world. Into that darkness, God sent his Son, who is God’s light against that darkness, God’s answer to the prince of darkness. We follow that light into the church, and Christ’s light is passed on to us. Each of us becomes a bearer of Christ’s light. We are to take that light into all the dark parts of our life and the world. Don’t let Christ’s light go out.
Next, we hear God’s saving Word in the many readings from scripture. God promises not to abandon sinful humanity but to send His Son for our salvation. Christ calls us not merely to be hearers of his Word but doers also and to carry it to those who are starving for the truth. Don’t let Christ’s Word go silent.
Then, in some parishes, people are baptized, and everywhere people are sprinkled with Holy Water to remind us that in our baptism, we died to sin and were born anew in Christ. Christ invites us to become his cleansing and healing Water for others by bringing forgiveness and hope to them. Don’t let Christ’s healing Water dry up.
In the Eucharist that follows, we receive the Body and Blood of Christ and are thereby transformed into his Body. Christ sends us out to be His Body in the world, to take Him to our families, to our workplaces, to our communities. As members of His Body, we are to remain always united to Him and to one another.
In the Vigil, we experience Christ’s Light, hear Christ’s Word, feel Christ’s Water and eat Christ’s Body. But these great gifts are not meant only for this occasion, nor are they meant only for us who receive them. Along with these gifts, Christ also gives us the power and the mission to be His Light, His Word, His Water, and His Body in the world He loves and desires to draw to Himself.
The Paschal Triduum does not end on Easter; it is carried by us throughout the year and to all we meet.
On behalf of all of the monks and seminarians of Conception, I want to wish you a happy Easter. Know that we are carrying you into our prayers during these sacred days. Together, may we rejoice with every Alleluia, remembering that God made us for Easter, for resurrection with Christ, for eternal happiness with God.
Reflection by Abbot Benedict Neenan, OSB