The Drama of Holy Week

Posted by on 04.03.07 | No Comments
Filed Under Uncategorized

Warning: Illegal string offset 'status_txt' in /home/virtu151/public_html/wp-content/plugins/share-and-follow/share-and-follow.php on line 1168

Warning: Illegal string offset 'status_txt' in /home/virtu151/public_html/wp-content/plugins/share-and-follow/share-and-follow.php on line 1168

Warning: Illegal string offset 'status_txt' in /home/virtu151/public_html/wp-content/plugins/share-and-follow/share-and-follow.php on line 1168

Warning: Illegal string offset 'status_txt' in /home/virtu151/public_html/wp-content/plugins/share-and-follow/share-and-follow.php on line 1168

Warning: Illegal string offset 'status_txt' in /home/virtu151/public_html/wp-content/plugins/share-and-follow/share-and-follow.php on line 1168

Warning: Illegal string offset 'status_txt' in /home/virtu151/public_html/wp-content/plugins/share-and-follow/share-and-follow.php on line 1168

Warning: Illegal string offset 'status_txt' in /home/virtu151/public_html/wp-content/plugins/share-and-follow/share-and-follow.php on line 1168

Warning: Illegal string offset 'status_txt' in /home/virtu151/public_html/wp-content/plugins/share-and-follow/share-and-follow.php on line 1168

As we stand at the beginning of Holy Week, I wonder how the rest of you are faring. Perhaps this is an important week for you, perhaps it is not. As someone who staddles both the Catholic tradition and the UCC Church, I find that Holy Week still looms large in importance for me. It feels a bit like an exam (did I do ‘good’?), a trial (how are we going to get through this?), and something exhilerating (ah, we’re finally here, the culmination of the year!).

I realize that Holy Week really is not about me, but it is partly about how I attach my faith journey to that of Jesus. Do I face suffering with the courage he did? Can I muster a snippet of joy as I head into my own personal Jerusalem? Can I stay steady in the face of rejection and the abandonment of my dearest friends?

Those are not easy to answer, and I guess they continue to present themselves as measuring rods as I walk forward. First, we wash each other’s feet. There is a monk who recently said he wondered why the washing of the feet had not become the 8th sacrament–it seems to embody so clearly what we are meant to do in this world and how we are to be holy. By serving others.

Then comes the dread of Good Friday, when nothing, in fact, seems good about it at all; just darkness and wreckage and a sense of hopelessness, even though we know the ending to the story is a good one. I have a tendency to get stuck in wreckage. This Lent is teaching me to let go of that.

Then Holy Saturday starts in darkness, in keeping with the dreadfulness of the previous day. But the flame flickers, catches (if the priest is lucky!), and flares up to sit like some radiant hat atop the Paschal Candle. And we process around the church singing the Litany of the Saints, which always undoes me. Tears and goosebumps abound, as I sense a vast company of well-wishers, those gone before, who are regarding us with calm compassion and holy warmth.

We can wrap outselves in that cloak of mercy as we go back out into the night, later, at the finish. We can remember our wet feet, and kneeling to wash others; we can remember the stillness and hollowness of Good Friday; we can keep alight inside the Pascal flame no matter what is ahead for us. For it does not go out. It never did and it never does.

]]>

timeline

have your say

Add your comment below, or trackback from your own site. Subscribe to these comments.

Be nice. Keep it clean. Stay on topic. No spam.

You can use these tags:
<a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>

:

: