The Queen Of Festivals – Angela Tilbey

Easter is called the queen of festivals but so it is, but it is a mistake to think Easter lasts only for Easter Sunday. The season of Eastertide lasts fifty days and includes Ascension and Pentecost. Something of the character of Easter should affect our worship and prayers during this season. I think this means consciously attending to the Easter stories in the Gospels; reading them as though they are addressed to us personally, taking seriously the note of searching and finding, unbelief and rejoicing, waiting and worship. These stories can speak powerfully to our human experience and help us to confidence in a God who is always calling us onward. Nothing is impossible for the God who raised Jesus from the dead.

Easter follows Lent as spring follows winter. If Lent is, as it should be, a time of quietness and interiority Easter should we when we resolve to renew our discipleship and allow ourselves to be inspired to mission and action. The Church has a job to do, in spreading the light of Christ into the world, which includes our parish and neighbourhood. Easter invites us to look on our world from the perspective of the resurrection. This is not to deny our brokenness, which is everywhere, including, often, in our own families and in our own hearts. But the risen Lord takes up the fragmented pieces and calls us to follow as he goes before us ‘into Galilee’. We are to meet him in new reality where the kingdom of God has already broken in. As Pope John Paul II used to say ‘We are an Easter people and Alleluia is our song’. Happy Easter! Happy Eastertide! Christ is risen from the dead, Alleluya.