For my first time as a Rite of Christian Initiation for Adults (RCIA) Coordinator, I attended the Easter Vigil. We welcomed four, fine women into the Church, where they received the sacraments of Confirmation and Holy Communion. We also witnessed the baptism of 17 people!!! Yes, it was a long evening, but a wonderful experience to witness, as well. Our celebration at the Easter Vigil, began the Easter Octave; an eight-day celebration of Jesus’ Resurrection. Easter is so important, so vital to the essence of the Catholic faith, that we need eight days to soak in the meaning of Christ’s sacrifice, mercy, and salvific power.
Remember Christ’s Sacrifice During the Easter Octave
Easter is the most important day on the Christian calendar, as it marks the fulfillment of God’s plan for redemption of His people. Christ conquered death and sin with His Passion, Death, and Resurrection. Think about that for a moment. Without the Resurrection, we have no hope for eternal life. Yet, because of Christ’s sacrifice, we do have the hope of one day being resurrected. Christ shows us that there is life after our human deaths!
Remember Christ’s Mercy During the Easter Octave
We end the Easter Octave with the Feast of Divine Mercy Sunday, a day set aside to specifically remember Christ’s font of unending mercy. Through the Resurrection, Christ gives us hope. Through His mercy, Christ makes eternal life possible for each of us. He wants us to seek out His mercy, as it is there for the taking. None of us are worthy enough to receive it on our own merit; yet, it is exactly what we need to one day be granted entrance into Heaven.
Remembering Christ’s Salvific Power During the Easter Octave
Jesus entered humanity, grew to manhood, and willfully fulfilled the Father’s plan for salvation by embracing the mantle of Messiah, “the Anointed.” As our Messiah, His salvific power gives us the gateway to Heaven. He now asks us to pick up our mantle, as Disciples, and follow in His Way; the Way of Virtue, the Way of Beatitude. He asks us to model His behavior, by loving our neighbor as ourselves.
Are you ready to accept Christ’s offer of salvation? Will you accept Christ’s mercy? Will you pick up your mantle and become Christ’s Disciple?
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