Christ is Risen!
Lent is past for another year and the bottle of red wine given to me at the beginning of February is open – but only one glass because the alarm clock will ring at 5.30 in the morning in order to be at the top of Killiney Hill for the Sonrise service at 6.20 am.
We had forty people at our vigil service at 8 p.m., which is OK for our little parish which was never into doing such things in the past. It was occasion filled with laughter as children brought flowers for the decoration of the cross. One mother had made a beautiful arrangement of flowers in an oasis and her daughters took it part flower by flower in order to put flowers into the mesh attached to the wooden cross. Niall, the long suffering theological student attached to our parish said he didn’t realise that flower arranging was an expected qualification.
There is something in Easter that resonates, perhaps it is the continuing closeness to the land, perhaps it is the tales of 1916. There was a joy amongst those leaving the church this evening, partly attributable amongst the children to the handing out of Cadbury’s cream eggs.
Four more services – 6.20 a.m., 9.00 a.m., 10.30 a.m. and 7 p.m. (At 10.15 I manage bilocation, appearing on RTE television as well as being in church, I assume people will figure that the televised liturgy from the RTE studio is prerecorded). Easter Monday will then be in sight and there is a feeling of flatness. There is almost a sadness that the intensity of this past week is past. It is tiring but it is filled with meaning and import, and suddenly the world is back to the dull and the mundane – it is like the days after Christmas.
The early Easter means the trees are still bare and the wind is biting and that summer is still a long way away. The secret is in holding onto the warmth of heart that filled this evening, the sense that the risen Lord is present, even in a dark, cold and damp Dublin.