HAPPY EASTER SEASON EVERYONE! The rising cycle of the Paschal Mystery is upon us now as we celebrate for fifty days (until Pentecost). Doesn’t it feel glorious? My bearded irises, calla lilies, rose bushes, and geraniums are blooming. Along with Jesus, all the earth has risen to new life. Likewise, my engagement with Lent has ended and now I am joyfully embracing this Spring season with a renewed and intentional gusto. I began on Holy Saturday by making traditional Easter bread for my family to share, a sacramental gesture of gratitude for the gift of the resurrection.

I have been baking bread for fifty years–for holidays, special occasions, and little presents for bread lovers. My fascination with the whole process started because my mother baked bread and simply, I loved to eat it! It was crusty on the outside and sweetly tender on the inside. Even the best bakery in town could not compete with it. Spread with butter and jam or peanut butter, it never lasted more than one day at our house. When I moved far away from home after I married, baking bread was one of the first culinary adventures I undertook. As simple as the ingredients are, the process was one I learned to respect. From the mixing of flour, yeast, and warm liquids, there was kneading, and diligent waiting for the dough to rise before baking. The end result still seems to me like a little miracle.

These days, it is important not only to look for little “resurrection” miracles but to participate in them as well. The world situation can be infinitely depressing if we cannot see through lugubrious situations with a mystic’s eyes, with a “faith that looks through death,” as the poet wrote so long ago. In Christianity, what looks like death/defeat is really life/victory. Every moment is paradoxically meaningful when we rise from our banal, cynical, false self tendencies. In essence, the resurrection teaches us that holding the tensions of life can be endured with the gentle hope of rising again.

Everyone “ooohed” and “ahhed” when they beheld the loaves of Easter bread set as the centerpiece of our family table on Sunday. In between my grandchildren’s egg hunts and the many lures of peeps, chocolate bunnies, and jelly beans, we tacitly became the Body of Christ when we broke bread together and humbly remembered why we gather on Easter in the first place. Rising to the occasion, we were aglow with bonds of generational love that we then streamed out into a world in need. I hope you felt it.

One thought on “Rising”

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: