Holy Saturday: The Tomb


Holy Saturday is the most forgotten day of the Triduum.   But it is so vital.  Otherwise the circle of life, death, and rebirth can not take place.

There is no knowing the true joy of Easter and Resurrection until all our normal optimism is gone.  You need to see the dead body go into the Tomb and the stone rolled over it.  There has to be that finality.

There has to be that sweet sorrowful moment of cleaning the body, preparing it for burial, and seeing the beauty and rest in death.  Even a violent awful death.

Our society gives no room for grief and proper mourning.  Holy Saturday is about that, letting our grief rise up and express itself.

The machinery of our world crushes so many bodie and souls.  For the billions of poor, physically.  For the rich, the isolation and despair of contemporary life.

There can be no expectation of Resurrection, else it is not faith.  When the life force is gone from a person it is no longer their body, it’s a corpse.  And there is something freeing about that realization.  If you go to an open-casket funeral as I did very often as a boy, you notice this right away.  Even though people will still address the corpse as if it were grandma or grandpa–“oh she looks so nice”–it’s clear, was to me then, is still now, it’s not grandma (or fill in the blank person).

The person is freed and rests with God.  They are released to creation as the great Roman Catholic theologian Karl Rahner stated.

Jesus today is released to creation, rests in the bosom of the Almighty, the Great Spirit that pervades and creates all.

Published in: on March 22, 2008 at 1:55 pm  Comments (3)  
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3 CommentsLeave a comment

  1. You make some interesting points.

  2. thanks. happy easter.


  3. […] realistic sense of death (which I pointed to yesterday in the post on the tragic forgotten nature of Holy Saturday) is what allows us to truly believe in resurrection and it actually be resurrection.  Otherwise as […]

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