For many years, I was part of an e-mail list for people involved in initiation ministry ... and now and again, one of the list members would occasionally say, "I often wonder just what we are initiating them into." This was usually said when HMC would do something just unexplainable or dumb or head-shaking. And I admit, I still think that on occasion ..... and especially after this week in the church.
Last night, I attended the Easter Vigil and every year, it never fails to move me. I do still occasionally ponder T's question: "Just what are we initiating them into?" And my answer would be: a flawed body that needs your brokenness to help make it whole. Broken as we are, we're still the ones responsible for carrying out Christ's work in the world. Insane as the institution can be, it is still the people who make the Church.
There's a great song by Michael Card that I had forgotten about until I played it on Good Friday. As many times as I've listened to the song, it was like rediscovering a great truth when I heard it again.......
The marks of death that God chose never to erase
The wounds of love's eternal marks
When the kingdom comes with its perfected sons
He will be known by the scars
It is because of the scars that we will be perfected. The love that caused the scars is what we celebrate in the Triduum. You cannot separate Holy Thursday, Good Friday, and Easter. It is one event, so interwoven that you cannot place more importance to any segment over the others. Similar to Easter and Christmas. Without Christmas, there is no Easter .... but without Easter, why would you even need to celebrate Christmas?
Jesus Christ our light is risen; sound the trumpet of salvation! Surrexit Christus, alleluia; cantate Domino, alleluia!
He is risen: he is risen indeed!