By Joe Nangle, OFM

April 23, 2011

Readings for the Easter Vigil
Genesis 1:1-2:2 | Genesis 22:1-18 | Exodus 14:15-15:1
Isaiah 54:5-14 | Isaiah 55:1-11 | Baruch 3:9-15, 32-4:4
Ezekiel 36:16-28 | Romans 6:3-11 | Matthew 28:1-10

Holy SaturdayThe tomb is cold, dark, and lonely. It smells of death. It is not a comfortable place to be. But it is where the Christian community is called to be. To wait here, in the dark, until the light of the Easter vigil is kindled again. And yet, even in this place of death, the seed of life has been planted. We are in the between time. Between life and death. Between sadness and joy. Between night and day. Between what has been and what will be. The events have been set in motion. All is in process. All is unknown.

We are a resurrection people who hunger and thirst and long to break out of this tomb. But we are called to wait. To bear with the pain a little longer. To breathe the rancor of death, allowing it to penetrate our souls. To flounder in the emptiness, that it might linger in our hearts. Here, in the tomb, we wait with the world. We enter the womb of solidarity, where our hearts nestle among the yearnings of those who wait. We taste the desire of those who live in deprivation. We are bruised by the wounds of those who are imprisoned by injustice, fear and oppression. We grope in the darkness of those overcome by despair.

We watch. We wait. We long. When the stone is rolled away, we will emerge into the light of Easter. Then let us step carefully out of this time of waiting. Let us carry with us the yearnings that we have experienced here in the tomb. Let us be a people who remain in the between time, willing to live with the tension of what has been and what will be. Let us be a Christian community that embraces the heart of nonviolence and risks bringing forth the Reign of God for all people. (Romans 6:3-11)

This reflection is from Following Jesus on the Way to Calvary: Lent 1997 by Joe Nangle, OFM. Joe is a member of the Assissi Community in Washington, D.C. and a Pax Christi USA Ambassador of Peace.

  • For more Lenten resources, click here.
  • To read the Sunday reflections from this year’s Lenten booklet by Angie O’Gorman, click here.

One thought on “HOLY WEEK: Reflection for Holy Saturday

  1. Let us celebrate the resurrection. Let us remember his message.

    Christ said: A rich man has less of a chance to make it to the kingdom of God than a camel can pass through the eye of a needle. Charity, compassion, love for one another is what he taught us.

    He also said: the love of money is the root of all evil.
    Sad to know we have preferred to love money, power, greed and war instead of His teachings. In war, we kill his children and destroy the world he so lovingly entrusted us with.

    If we continue this way, his dying was a waste of His time. It is never too late to learn His ways.

    I choose to follow His teachings. It is based on that, that I write to you. Many say Christ was a socialist. Call it what you wish, his message is the only one that if followed, will save humanity, regardless of what religious teachings or lack thereof, not only in our planet, but in the afterlife. Today, one of the most socialist nations in the planet is Sweden. Look into that, and see, it is not how capitalism paints it.

    Adlai Stevenson said: “We travel together, passengers on a little spaceship,

    dependent on its vulnerable reserves of air and soil; all committed for our

    safety to its security and peace; preserved from annihilation only by the care,

    the work, and I will say, the love we give our fragile craft. We cannot maintain

    it half fartunate, half miserable, half confident, half despairing,

    half free in the liberation of resources. No craft, no crew can travel

    with such vast contradictions. On their resolution depends the survival of us all”

    The Catholic Climate Covenant is widely embraced by the Catholic community. Fully twenty-seven national Catholic organizations support the Catholic Climate Covenant. From the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops to the National Federation of Priests Councils, the Covenant has tapped a desire for Catholic organizations and their constituents to understand and act on the threat of climate change from a Catholic perspective. This perspective holds both care for creation and care for those must vulnerable to climate change and environmental threats: poor people at home and abroad.
    Catholic partners that actively support the Covenant and promote the St. Francis Pledge to Care for Creation and the Poor

    Watch this video to see the whole picture of what we have done to His gifts:

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