It is so hard to express the height of joy and the awesome beauty of the realization of a long anticipated celebration. There are some very special events in life that come to mind – a wedding day, the birth of a child, and for a Catholic, being received into full communion on Easter Vigil.
After months of preparation and soul searching, the day finally arrives, and the reality overwhelms every sense – sight: total darkness as the mass begins, and then the glow of the Easter fire, gradually spreading throughout the church in every pew from person to person as candles are lit from the Paschal Candle until the whole church is aglow; smell: the incense, glorious and mysterious, an image of our prayers ascending to God; the sounds: the ringing of bells, the chanting of scripture, the sweet pure harmonies of sacred polyphony, and the mighty triumph of the organ and voices uplifted in praise; touch: the warmth of the candlelight and occasional drops of wax dripping down onto fingers, the water of baptism, the smooth oil of chrism upon the forehead, the Bishop’s touch upon the shoulder at the moment of confirmation; taste: receiving the Body and Blood, Soul and Divinity of Christ in the Holy Eucharist.
This year I was able to go through the ceremony with two members of our “neighborhood family”, Desiree and Joanna. And this time I was able to better appreciate the scope of the liturgy than I was 2 years ago when we entered the Church. The joy of seeing close to 40 people newly baptized, and about the same number receiving confirmation, and all of them receiving the Holy Eucharist for the first time, was truly ineffable.
These are the pics I took (no flash was in the cathedral, but the few I was able to get from my spot in the second row turned out well and give a sense of the evening).[hr color=”dark-gray” width=”100%” border_width=”2px” ]
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For some excellent professional photos of the evening, you have to visit the Catholic Sun Facebook page. Here’s my favorite, for obvious reasons:
- Hit “Refresh”
- Easter Sunday!!