I’m having a tough time disengaging from my Paschal party and the preceding Holy Week journey.
Even right now, during Bright Week for pity’s sake, I am listening to the Lamentations of Holy Week because I just love it so much. I miss the singing, the reflection, the knowledge of all that seemed lost then was found in Christ’s redemptive work.
I miss the mourning. I miss the soulful singing as we wait and watch. I miss the sadness turning into joy. I miss hearing the birds awake as we left the little parish hall at 4 a.m. Sunday. I miss my brothers and sisters, whom I rarely see but with whom I have shared this great Thing now two years in a row. I miss hearing Subdeacon Eusebius’ voice reading the Scriptures. I miss watching Elena direct the choir with such joy. I miss seeing Fr. Stacey grin from ear to ear as he blesses the parishioners with showers of holy water. I miss singing alongside my sister. I miss the darkness with candlelight peaking through as we leave the church for the procession.
I miss it all. I love it all, what it brings to me, what it does to me and where it takes me. I love that when I leave on Pascha, I feel like a bright, new penny. I love that throughout Bright Week I don’t worry about what I’m eating, then laugh when I notice that I’m not worrying about what I’m eating. I love that all I want to do is be back at Church and NO one at work can make that happen.
But I love that this Sunday, like every Sunday, we will again celebrate the Resurrection, for every Sunday in Orthodoxy is a mini-Pascha. And this week we’ll get to sing “The Angel Cried.” And Fr. Andrew will say “Christ is Risen” in English, Greek, Slavonic and probably Ukrainian. And we will answer him in English, Greek, Slavonic and probably Ukrainian. The Ethiopians will do that thing that they do when they hear “Christ is Risen” that can’t be translated into words. And I will smile because of the universal-ness of God’s love for us because He came for us, died for us, arose for us and saves us in any language.
I miss Holy Week. I miss Pascha. But I love missing it. And I can’t wait for next year.
Christ is risen, everybody! Christ is Risen!!