Easter octave

The first eight days of the Easter season form the Easter octave and are celebrated as solemnities of the Lord. Each day is another little Easter. The Alleluia verse is repeated throughout the octave: “This is the day the Lord has made; let us rejoice and be glad. Alleluia!”

The Gospel continues to relate the story of Christ’s resurrection — how Mary Magdalene and the other Mary meet Jesus. Jesus tells them “Do not be afraid. Go tell my brothers to go to Galilee, and there they will see me.”

During the Easter Season, first reading is from the Acts of the Apostles. Today is Acts 2:36-41. Peter is preaching on the day of Pentecost to the Jews: “The whole House of Israel can be certain that God has made this Jesus whom you crucified both Lord and Christ….You must repent and….be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins, and you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit.” They repented, and 3000 were baptized that day.

Our Easter joy should be overflowing. A wonderful Ukrainian (and Polish and Slovakian) custom is the greeting of one another with the words: Khrystos Voskres(Christ is risen). The answer to this greeting is Voistynu Voskres (He is risen, indeed or He is truly risen). Let us adopt this custom to our English language and show our Easter joy to all.

Source: CatholicCulture.org

Prières du jour

Esprit Saint, par ton feu, augmente ma foi en Jésus, Fils de Dieu, qui nous révèle et nous communique par sa mort et sa Résurrection l’infinie miséricorde du Père. Au nom du Père…

Seigneur, fais-moi accueillir l’annonce de ton amour pour moi avec un cœur nouveau comme si c’était la première fois que je l’entendais.

Jésus, en ce temps de Pâques que nous venons de commencer, aide-moi à être un évangélisateur convaincu de ton amour pour tous les hommes, un témoin cohérent de ton amour pour moi. Donne-moi une grande proximité et compréhension vis-à-vis des personnes, un accueil cordial et une grande patience pour ne pas condamner sans avoir écouter. Donne-moi simplement un cœur nouveau pour accueillir l’annonce de ton amour salvifique et la force pour l’incarner dans ma vie.

Easter Monday

The Lord has risen from the dead, as he foretold. Let there be happiness and rejoicing for he is our King forever, alleluia. According to Moses and the prophets Christ was to suffer all “these things and so to enter into His glory”. And what was this “glory” which Christ merited by His sufferings and death? It was His resurrection, His ascension into heaven, His sitting at the right hand of the Father, the homage of all the nations. It was especially the glorification of His body which only a few days ago hung mangled and lifeless on the cross.

« The risen Christ, Christ in glory, has divested himself of the things of this earth, so that we men, his brothers, should ask ourselves what things we need to get rid of. » – St Josemaria, The Forge

« “Christ is alive.” This is the great truth which fills our faith with meaning. Jesus, who died on the cross, has risen. He has triumphed over death; he has overcome sorrow, anguish and the power of darkness. “Do not be terrified” was how the angels greeted the women who came to the tomb. “Do not be terrified. You are looking for Jesus of Nazareth, who was crucified. He has risen; he is not here.” “This is the day which the Lord has made; let us rejoice and be glad in it.”

Easter is a time of joy — a joy not confined to this period of the liturgical year, but to be found really and fully in the Christian’s heart. For Christ is alive. He is not someone who has gone, someone who existed for a time and then passed on, leaving us a wonderful example and a great memory.

No, Christ is alive. Jesus is the Emmanuel: God with us. His resurrection shows us that God does not abandon his own. He promised he would not: “Can a woman forget her baby that is still unweaned, pity no longer the son she bore in her womb? Even these may forget, yet I will not forget you.” And he has kept his promise. His delight is still to be with the sons of men. » – St Josemaria, Christ is passing

Easter time

The celebration of Easter is prolonged throughout the Easter season. The fifty days from Easter Sunday to Pentecost Sunday are celebrated as one feast day, the “great Sunday.”

The Sundays of this season are regarded as Sundays of Easter and are so termed; they have precedence over all feasts of the Lord and over all solemnities. Solemnities that fall on one of these Sundays are anticipated on the Saturday. Celebrations in honor of the Blessed Virgin Mary or the saints that fall during the week may not be transferred to one of these Sundays.

Intercession should be made in the Eucharistic Prayer for the newly baptized. It is also appropriate that children receive their first communion on one or other of the Sundays of Easter.

This sacred period of fifty days concludes with Pentecost Sunday, when the gift of the Holy Spirit to the apostles, the beginnings of the Church, and the start of its mission to all tongues and peoples and nations are commemorated.

“It is proper to the paschal festivity that the whole Church rejoices at the forgiveness of sins, which is not only for those who are reborn in Holy Baptism, but also for those who have long been numbered among the adopted children.” By means of a more intensive pastoral care and a deeper spiritual effort, all who celebrate the Easter feasts will, by the Lord’s grace, experience their effect in their daily lives.

Source: The Catholic Liturgical Library

He is risen!

“I rose up and am still with Thee.” After His labors and His humiliations, Christ finds rest with His Father. “I am still with Thee.” This is perfect beatitude. Through His cross He entered into the possession of eternal glory. Christ has gained the crown of victory; through Christ men also win their crowns of victory. Humanity was under a curse and subject to the wrath of God. Now that they have risen with Christ, their guilt has been destroyed. “I rose up and am still with Thee.” The liturgy places these words in the mouth of the Church that she may pray them with Christ.

“The earth trembled and was still when God arose in judgment.” The resurrection of Christ is the judgment and condemnation of those who have turned away from God. This judgment was prefigured by the angel who passed through the land of Egypt destroying the first-born of the Egyptians. The Israelites marked the doors of their houses with the blood of the paschal lamb. We are the new Israel, and “Christ our Pasch is sacrificed.” We mark ourselves with His blood, which we enjoy in the Holy Eucharist. We have been pardoned, we are saved, we shall live.

“He is risen.” The resurrection of Christ is a pledge of our own resurrection. It is the foundation upon which our faith rests. It is the guarantee of our redemption and God’s assurance that our sins are forgiven and that we are called to eternal life. “This is the day which the Lord hath made; let us be glad and rejoice therein. Give praise to the Lord, for He is good, for His mercy endures forever. Alleluia.” “Christ our Pasch is sacrificed. . . . The Lamb redeems the sheep. Christ, the innocent One, hath reconciled sinners to the Father.”

— Excerpted from The Light of the World by Benedict Baur, O.S.B.

Prayer of the day

O God, who on this day, through your Only Begotten Son, have conquered death and unlocked for us the path to eternity, grant, we pray, that we who keep the solemnity of the Lord’s Resurrection may, through the renewal brought by your Spirit, rise up in the light of life. Through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son, who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.

Christ is risen!

When evening fell on the Sabbath, Mary Magdalen and Mary, the mother of James, and Salome bought spices that, going, they might anoint the dead body of Jesus. —Very early on the following day, when the sun has already risen, they come to the sepulchre (Mark 16:1‑2). And upon entering they are dismayed, for they do not find the body of Our Lord. —A youth, clothed in white, says to them: Fear not. I know that you seek Jesus of Nazareth: non est hic, surrexit enim sicut dixit, —He is not here, for He has risen, as He said (Matt 28:5).

He has risen! —Jesus has risen. He is not in the sepulchre. —Life has over­come death.

He appeared to His most Holy Mother. —He appeared to Mary of Magdala, who is carried away with love. —And to Peter and the rest of the Apostles. —And to you and me, who are His disciples and more in love than Magdalen: the things we say to Him!

May we never die through sin; may our spiritual resur­rection be eternal. —And before this decade is over, you have kissed the wounds on His feet…, and I, more daring —because I am more a child—, have placed my lips upon His open side.

The Sacrement of Penance and Easter Duty

One of the duties of a Catholic is to fulfill the six Precepts of the Church, the positive laws which are “meant to guarantee to the faithful the indispensable minimum in the spirit of prayer and moral effort, in the growth in love of God and neighbor” (Catechism of the Catholic Church, 2041). Two of these precepts directly relate to the upcoming Easter season. The third precept is “You shall humbly receive your Creator in Holy Communion at least during the Easter season.” This is tied in with the second precept to “confess your sins at least once a year.” If we want to receive Jesus worthily in Holy Communion during Easter, we need to cleanse our souls, especially of any mortal sin through the Sacrament of Penance. Most parishes offer extra confession times for Holy Week, but usually any priest is available on request to hear confession by appointment.