Saturday, 21 April 2012

Alleluia! Christ is Risen!

After a fortnight without updating my blog, the longest gap since arriving in the Philippines 200 days ago, I have plenty to catch up on, beginning with a greeting:

Happy Easter!

For anyone who is thinking it is already a little late for such a greeting, I disagree. With the Easter season lasting 50 days, I am well within my rights to still be celebrating the resurrection.

It strikes me as significant that in the church calendar, the season of Easter lasts for longer than the forty day period of Lenten fasting which precedes it. This is, to my mind, no mistake and no coincidence: the period of celebration should surpass, not only in time but also in magnitude, the suffering before it. It is sad that all too often, Easter is reduced to one day of gorging on chocolate to mark the end of a time of fasting, rather than being lived as an extended time of joyful celebration. With or without karaoke, Easter should be a party which exhilarates and inspires, and one which lasts.

This is my faith. A faith where joy and celebration outweigh sacrifice and suffering. A faith where self-giving gives birth to the greater joy of loving and living together; and where limitations only serve to engender the deeper freedom of fulfilling true desires.

This is my faith. A faith where eternal life is not a reward for a life of duty to be laboured for and looked forward to, but is a reality to be lived here and now in the fulfilment on each new day.

This is my faith. A faith which encompasses Lent, certainly, but where Lent is immeasurably surpassed by Easter joy.

This is my faith. A faith of resurrection and of life.

Happy Easter!

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