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Monday, April 17, 2006

We do it right
Saturday morning, I was speaking to one of the people entering the Catholic Church that night at the Easter vigil. He was telling me he and his wife wre raised Methodist (I believe) and that they had both drifted away from Christianity. They had discussed going back to church but agreed that if they did, it had to be Catholic, because the Catholic Church "does ti right." I think the Easter Vigil is a strong sign that we indeed do it right.

For example, the Exultet:
Rejoice, heavenly powers! Sing, choirs of angels!
Exult, all creation around God's throne!
Jesus Christ, our King, is risen!
Sound the trumpet of salvation!

Rejoice, O earth, in shining splendor,
radiant in the brightness of your King!
Christ has conquered! Glory fills you!
Darkness vanishes for ever!

Rejoice, O Mother Church! Exult in glory!
The risen Savior shines upon you!
Let this place resound with joy,
echoing the mighty song of all God's people!

My dearest friends,
standing with me in this holy light,
join me in asking God for mercy,

that he may give his unworthy minister
grace to sing his Easter praises.

Deacon: The Lord be with you.
People: And also with you.
Deacon: Lift up your hearts.
People: We lift them up to the Lord.
Deacon: Let us give thanks to the Lord our God.
People: It is right to give him thanks and praise.

It is truly right
that with full hearts and minds and voices
we should praise the unseen God, the all-powerful Father,
and his only Son, our Lord Jesus Christ.

For Christ has ransomed us with his blood,
and paid for us the price of Adam's sin to our eternal Father!

This is our passover feast,
when Christ, the true Lamb, is slain,
whose blood consecrates the homes of all believers.

This is the night
when first you saved our fathers:
you freed the people of Israel from their slavery
and led them dry-shod through the sea.

This is the night
when the pillar of fire destroyed the darkness of sin!

This is night
when Christians everywhere,
washed clean of sin and freed from all defilement
You've got to it hear it chanted to get its full effect, but it's amazing and captures the great gift of Easter so well. (Our cantor does a great job with this.)

Another example is the Liturgy of Light where the church is lit only by candles until the time of Gloria when (symbolically) Christ rises from the dead and Light enters the world.

And then the readings we do at Mass, seven readings and Psalms from the Old Testament showing how Christ had to rise from the dead and all that happened was foretold.

If you have the chance, attend a Easter Vigil Mass at some point. It's really inspiring. I jsut wish I could convice our Pastor to do all the readings.

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