Saturday, April 07, 2012

Solemn, Silent, Holy Saturday

Joan Chittisters's essay for today from The Liturgical Year: The Spiraling Adventure of the Spiritual Life is called "Holy Saturday: The Loss that is Gain."

Here are a few of the highlights.

Holy Saturday is a day nobody talks about much in the liturgical year... There are no public ceremonies, no particular liturgies to interrupt the sense of waiting and vacuity that mark the day. For the most part, we are left on our own on Holy Saturday. And yet every human being who has ever walked the earth has known what the emptiness of Holy Saturday is about. 

Everyone who has ever lived, who will ever live, will someday undergo a Holy Saturday of our own. Someday we will all know the power of overwhelming loss when life as we know it changes, when all hope dies midflight. Then, and only then, can we begin to understand the purpose of Holy Saturday. 

Holy Saturday faith is not about counting our blessings; it is about dealing with darkness and growing in hope. Without the Holy Saturdays of life, none of us may ever really grow up spiritually. 

Today, alone and bereft, we come face-to-face with the question we try so hard to avoid the rest of the year: how do we deal with the God of darkness as well as the Giver of Light? Have we been abandoned? Are we left now on our own in this world? Is there nothing else? Was all the rest of it pure fairy tale?

There is the hope that God is in the twilight parts of life as well as in its lucent ones, in the night of the soul as well as in the dawn of life, since both light and dark, night and dawn belong to God. 

Wishing he were still here, hoping he will come back.

It's Saturday, but Sunday's coming.

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