March 22, 2008


Today is perhaps one of the quietest days of the year- a day for realizing, waiting, contemplating. Good Friday was yesterday but Easter is not until tomorrow- there's that feeling of both suspense and suspension, breathing in a dark but sanctified stillness. Today is a day to just be.

Every year for a long while I've had an experience, brief and unextraordinary in itself, but carrying enough symbolism in its very simplicity for me to notice and remember it. Every year, after the Veneration of the Cross on Good Friday, I take my stack of music back to the choir room, hoarse, transported, and emotionally spent. The sunny choir room (it never will rain properly on Good Friday, around here) opens through a small door off a short hall, dim if not dark. Everything needed to decorate the church for Easter is sealed in boxes piled inconspicuously to one side.

What I always notice is the lilies. Hundreds and hundreds of lilies, enough to ornament the inside and outside of the church. You can probably imagine what hundreds of immaculate flowers waiting in a dim hallway smell like- the gently strong, reverent fragrance is almost overpowering.

Moving from the passion and pathos of my renewed witness of the crucifixion through the quiet, fragrant darkness to emerge blinking in sudden, glorious sunlight. A seconds-long journey, but year after year it strikes me anew in its resemblance of my spiritual journey from Yesterday to Tomorrow.

May the Lord be with you as you prepare to emerge in the Son-light of Easter morning.


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