Okay. Allow me to present you with the highlights of this Holy Week.
1. After all that studying and anxiously going in and out of exam rooms and wanting to get it all over with but having an oh-so slight feeling of foreboding, I shall happily say…EXAM BLOCK IS OVER. Ba-bam. I feel so free. I also feel like there’s no way I aced my math exams, but I guess that’s not a surprise.
…then I remember there’s like 11 more exam blocks to go before university. And that’s excluding any pre-Uni exams/optional national exams (not really an option if you ask my parents) I’m presuming I’ll take. The happy feeling is short-lived.
2. Turning 16. I thank God for my 16 years of existence, and I pray He will bless me with a few more centimeters of height. I know, you’re probably thinking how I went on and on about letting God write your story and how teenagers fall off the tracks because they’re not satisfied with who they are. You and I must be, but asking God to stop placing me in the row of other 5 feet-tall 10-year-olds wouldn’t hurt, would it?
3. The Triduum – the longest mass of the year. Liturgically, Lent ends just before the Holy Thursday celebration. The Triduum began with the Last Supper mass and the Washing of the Feet, and there was the Stations of the Cross and the Veneration of the Cross on Good Friday. The Easter Vigil mass was on Saturday night, and it was so special and profound, initiated by candle-lighting and concluded with joyful greetings of ‘Christ is risen!’. The Triduum culminated on the Easter Sunday morning mass and it was a very special one, too. Although Holy Week is the saddest time of the year, it is also the most joyful when Easter comes around, for Christ is risen! Alleluia!
4. Visiting seven Catholic churches on Holy Thursday night. My family and I prayed before the Eucharist, and it was like visiting Jesus when he was imprisoned by the Romans over 2000 years ago. To have a peaceful moment of prayer before the Lord in each church (that was open at 10pm) was so powerful and special, and my family and I were so privileged to be able to do so.
Easter is truly the happiest day of the year, even more joyful than Christmas. It marks the day Jesus rose from dead after He was crucified and went through the most excruciating of pain for us. He did all that for us. That just shows how much Jesus loves us and cares for us, and yet the world still takes that for granted. After all Jesus has done, we are still sinning against Him. Imagine how crestfallen Jesus feels when He watches us from above. The crucifix is so important because when we look at it, we are reminded of Jesus’ unconditional love for us. We are reminded of how much pain He went through just to save us. And every year during Lent, we contemplate on Jesus’ journey to the Cross. His journey to conquer death for all.
And the world again must secularise a Christian holiday. Ugh.
I’ll admit, Easter egg hunts and eating countless chocolate eggs are fun. In fact, I woke up this morning to the sound of children screaming “I found an egg!” and “I want to eat the chocolate now!” at like 6.30 am. I semi-consciously checked the time and calculated that it was still 1 and a half hours before mass, and plopped back in bed. I ended up waking up 30 minutes before mass and having chocolate for breakfast. What a morning.
So as you could tell, I ain’t saying that having some Easter egg fun is bad and that you’d be excommunicated from the church if you do and all the nasty stuff will happen to you because, obviously, it won’t. As a matter of fact, eggs are actually a sign of new life, when Jesus saved us from death and gave us eternal life when He died on the Cross. All the Easter bunny/egg fun does become bad if you lose hold of the true meaning of Easter. Never forget how much Jesus suffered to pay for our sins because it is a sign of true love. Not the mushy ‘true love’ where a boy and girl falls in love with each other and lives happily ever after and the birds are chirping and the sky is blue and the eyes are sparkling and the hearts are pounding, et cetera et cetera, albeit I’m a sucker for that kind of stuff. Jesus sacrificing His own life for us – now that’s an act of true love.
Death is swallowed up in victory – alleluia! Christ is risen – alleluia!
Happy Easter and may you all have a blessed one! 🙂