Monday, March 24, 2008

He is Risen... Indeed He is Risen.

I find it strange that Fr. George's homily that I heard twice has yet to really sit with me compared to Fr. Brian's from Holy Thursday or Bishop Rodimer's from Good Friday. I remember thinking, please let me take one thing from this homily, and I remember "be the light" meaning we are called to be the Light of Christ to others. I also remember Fr. George talking about not being afraid. He spoke of the women in the Gospel being "half joyful and half fearful" and that, that is how most of us go through life. I heard the homily twice and the same points came to mind both times looking back on it.

Fr. George being pastor has full reign of being main celebrant at the Triduum services, he usually splits it with the vicar, currently Fr. Brian. Since Fr. Brian had Holy Thursday and Bishop had Good Friday, Fr. George had Holy Saturday, he also by chance took the "gym Mass" which threw me because I am used to the vicar having that Mass, so I was disappointed to not hear Fr. Brian's homily, but apparently I needed to hear Fr. George's twice. Maybe it needed to sink in so I could take something away from it. The first time I listened to it, it didn't seem to stay with me. The second time however, and me thinking I should try to remember one thing from the homily, might have helped for it to stick a bit more.

Anyway, back to the Easter Vigil. It has been a few years since I have been excited to attend a vigil. I love the Vigil simply for the RCIA sacraments. I love watching people come into the Church. Having been a sponsor in the RCIA process at Seton Hall, it brings back great memories for the most part. Let's just say that last year with RCIA was where my defense of the Catholic faith started to appear. I just couldn't stand up there with my candidate and say she was ready when I didn't think she was. Thankfully, Fr. Bill was there to assure me I was doing the right thing. Oh well back to the Vigil. The Easter Vigil is one of the most beautiful services because so much actually happens at it.

Watching the church go from complete darkness to being full of the Light of Christ is awesome, and Fr. George could have used that in his homily, seeing as the Christ candle is what lights the rest of the candles in the church, the servers light their candles and then pass the Light of Christ along. It's quite awesome considering what's happening, Christ is going to every single person in the Church and setting them on fire, or lighting a fire under their ass. There's lots of signing and music and all that jazz. Surprisingly there were not too many issues with the Mass for me. I would rather have all the readings read, and not have the Genesis reading have signing in the middle of it, and have the congregation realize that Fr. George intones the Gloria and the Alleluia before we join in. It would have been nice to actually get more than the words "Praise to you" out of my mouth before the organ was playing the double Alleluia, and I understand that it was done quickly so that people didn't sit down, but if people actually followed along or paid attention from year to year we always do the double Alleluia at the Vigil.

The Vigil was truly a wonderful celebration, the Sacraments were awesome. I did find it amusing that a piece of the Paschal candle fell into the font and Fr. Brian had to fix it, I think very few people actually noticed it, but I always notice the silly stuff, like people not standing when Fr. George was blessing the fire outside and lighting the Paschal candle. Deacon Jerry nailed the chanting he had to do that night, the Christ be our light and the Mass has ended Alleluia Alleluia were done the best I've heard in the past few years.

I think part of me didn't take Fr. George's homily in because I wanted to get to the sacraments and have the new Catholics officially in the Church. I remember thinking to myself during the homily, ok you can end it, I want the Sacraments now. The homily after hearing it twice did have an impact on me, but no different than any other Sunday. I thought during the homily that he did have a great point in telling us that we need to bring the Light of Christ to others. Both times I heard the homily the idea of be not afraid sat with me. Fr. George spoke about being have afraid and have joyful with our lives and that is quite true. I know that I am afraid of hearing no to most of my ideas for the Church and other things so I stay quiet. I'm afraid of what might happen if I say yes to what God places on my heart, though I am joyful and excited to follow God and do what He wants. So I am totally one of the women walking to the tomb. I've bowed before Jesus in the Most Blessed Sacrament, I've been excited to follow Him, I'm still excited to follow Him, but I'm scared and worried about what it might bring.

I have for a while wanted to create a business card marketing myself as a Catholic speaker, I've had a desire to write, but I've never been good at writing papers, though I would assume a book is totally different. I've been told I'm good at giving talks and whatnot, so I'd love to do something with that. Maybe that's why Fr. George's homily didn't sit with me right away, I didn't want to apply it to my life. I could be called to write a Catechism/Bible Study on Mary called "Who's Your Mommy?" or editing a book telling the stories of the local guys who became priests, or who knows what I'm called to do.

Oh well, with the joy of Easter in my heart, maybe I won't be as afraid to do what God wants.

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