Sunday, April 8, 2012

Of Meaning


What does Easter really mean in our modern times? Christmas is an easier holiday for celebrations. Baby Jesus in the manger is more of a warm, comforting image than a bloody Jesus on a cross, Jesus laying cold and alone in a tomb. There's no cute, warm movies about Easter, no "It's a Wonderful Life", no "Miracles on 34th Street". There's no Easter Carols or Easter trees. There's simply our ministers trying to tell us something that will give us a sense of what meaning can be gained from pain and suffering, death and eternal life. Things some of us ignored for years, then, in moments self awareness, truly hit home.

All around my little town I see the dead. In the small memorial of toys and flowers at the spot where a woman died in a fiery collision with a semi, in a sign erected in the memory of a local killed in a long ago war. There's the little cross by the side of the road where another young soul left us. How important these undistinguished little memorials. Every death is a memory that ends here, yet continues on, life flowing on, sustained by love and faith.


How thankful we are for these memorials, for the spirits smoke that stays with us after the candle has been blown out.I remember a funeral service held, not on a Easter Sunday, but not long after Memorial Day, and it's significance was not so much for the day it was held, than for who was being remembered, another young local soldier killed by a roadside bomb in Iraq. The site was adorned with flags, small ones at grave site and larger ones near the folding chairs. Taps would be played, with one young soldier playing the echo. I imagined the grieving family hearing it and realizing that it meant distance. The dead were not sleeping, they were gone. Then later, the final taps were played, and there was no echo, yet they still remembered it, for the memory helps us hold on. After a while, an echo is enough.

That is what Easter is, not colored eggs or bunnies or a ham eaten with relatives.  It's  remembrance. It's the remembrance of a death that brings us life. Of sacrifice, of knowing that we will not be forgotten. Of the hope that after darkness there is light, inky comfort in the unknown.

15 comments:

Sherry said...

Amen. Well spoken.

Old NFO said...

Well said, Happy Easter Brigid!

RichD said...

Very well written. Have a pleasant Easter.

Guffaw in AZ said...

Amen, indeed. Happy Easter, Brigid!

Unisaw said...

That's a very eloquent post. Thank you for writing it.

Borepatch said...

Easter, like funerals, is for the living. A map for us to find our way with our poor navigation aids.

Both whisper to us, if we'll hear: "Live, love, be better for yourself and for others."

I'd say "nice post", but that's pretty much redundant here.

Rev. Paul said...

Happy Easter, friend. May His love and joy renew your spirit!

RabidAlien said...

Amen.

Hat Trick said...

Well said and I hope you've been having a Happy Easter.

Keads said...

As always your words give one a pause. Very well done and I hope you and yours have a Happy Easter.

Brigid said...

I hope all of you have a great Easter. Carol, I got your note, thank you for sharing that special day.

B.

Les @ LPN Programs said...

Wonderful post. Hopefully more people would read it. The most important celebration for Catholics around the world.

Stay blessed!
Les...
LPN Programs

Mrs. S. said...

A very eloquent way of reiterating why Easter is important. Thank you!

If you read my post for today, you already know that any resemblance of eloquence left the building this weekend, my apologies, just tired I guess.

Keith Wilson said...

Thank you for that Easter post.

That photo of the stream looks exactly like the stream that meanders through Beaver Meadows in Rocky Mt National Park on the way to Bear Lake. We a few weeks each summer in a cabin near that stream.

MO Bro said...

Well, wouldn't you know it... I stopped by before to wish you a Happy Easter... and it didn't post for some reason. So it goes, I 'spose. Happy belated Easter! Hope it was a good one.