Daily Reflection
April 21st, 2003
Ray Bucko, S.J.
Department of Sociology and Anthropology
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Monday in the Octave of Easter
Acts 2:14, 22-32
Psalm 16:1-2, 5, 7-8, 9-10, 11
Matthew 28:8-15

The Eastern Orthodox Christians refer to today at "Bright Monday."  It is the day after the commemoration of the Resurrection of Christ, the day after Easter.  It is bright precisely because through Christ's rising a light now shines over the darkness of death and the world and we are transformed.  The scriptures now speak of changes, not in Jesus who has been transformed but in those around Him.  Just as a bright light transforms objects shadowed in darkness so the resurrection transforms us all.

For Polish people (I'm a member of that tribe) today is Dingus Day-a day commemorated by throwing water at member of the opposite sex and hitting them with pussy willows.  I suspect this custom, like many other Polish customs, is meant to work up an appetite for the requisite large meal.   The only trouble with Polish meals is that after a few weeks you're hungry again!

Each Christian group celebrates transformations by doing something different.  Easter is not just one day it is an Octave (8 days - we get the word octivepuss from this-to make a face for eight days.)  Easter is a lifetime, a death time (for there is no Easter without Good Friday) and a resurrection time.

Jesus appears to various people and over the octave we read of  these appearances.  Today Peter attests to seeing the Lord and the Gospel tells of Christ's appearance to the two Marys.  In seeing Christ they are transformed, they are made "bright" as it were from the experience.

They tell the story.

Where have we seen the risen Lord?  Where have we seen an empty tomb?  When have we eaten with the risen Lord, rejoiced with him, sorrowed with him?

We too must tell the story.  For Christ does not invite us to "stay in" but to "go out" to the world, to rejoice, to celebrate, to transform and in so doing to be transformed.

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