I don't know why, but I'm worn out and don't feel up to posting. I'll try to get back up to speed this week. Thank you for your patience.
Archive for April, 2006
Last time, we looked at the baptismal promises. This time, St. Cyril tells us about Baptism itself. Which, in Jerusalem at that time, was done stark nekkid in front of God and everybody. (Albeit in the church’s baptistery, and only witnessed by others of the faithful. But still.) Once you got out of the water, then you got the robe. And Cyril tells us alllll about it.
“After these things, ye were led to the holy pool of Divine Baptism, as Christ was carried from the Cross to the Sepulchre which is before our eyes And each of you was asked, whether he believed in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost, and ye made that saving confession, and descended three times into the water, and ascended again; here also hinting by a symbol at the three days burial of Christ. For as our Saviour passed three days and three nights in the heart of the earth, so you also in your first ascent out of the water, represented the first day of Christ in the earth, and by your descent, the night; for as he who is in the night, no longer sees, but he who is in the day, remains in the light, so in the descent, as in the night, ye saw nothing, but in ascending again ye were as in the day. And at the self-same moment ye were both dying and being born; and that Water of salvation was at once your grave and your mother.”
(Never thought I’d be putting a work-safety warning on a lecture on Baptism!)
Here’s the first “mystagogical” lecture. It’s the Monday after Easter, and all the newly baptized (and First Communion-ed) folks have come back in for a final week of short classes. First they received, at Easter, what were and are called in Greek the Mysteries, and in Latin the Sacraments. Now they are to have them explained — well, in so far as any mere human can explain. (These are Mysteries instituted by God, after all; you can spend a lifetime exploring their depths and still not understand everything about them. St. Cyril is just starting them off on that lifetime.)
“There we have Moses sent from God to Egypt; here, Christ, sent forth from His Father into the world. There, that Moses might lead forth an afflicted people out of Egypt; here, that Christ might rescue those who are oppressed in the world under sin. There, the blood of a lamb was the spell against the destroyer; here, the blood of the Lamb without blemish Jesus Christ is made the charm to scare evil spirits. There, the tyrant was pursuing that ancient people even to the sea; and here the daring and shameless spirit, the author of evil, was following thee even to the very streams of salvation. The tyrant of old was drowned in the sea; and this present one disappears in the water of salvation.”
(After going hoarse in Holy Week, I was going to skip past the last 3 pre-Easter catechetical lectures and go back to the rest later. I am still planning to do this.)
I took care of Gesine's little problem last night, btw. I'll post Cyril stuff tonight.
I also got a new hard drive for my computer, but after last night, I've decided to hold off on installing that until the weekend.
Sorry to be such a wimp, everyone, but I'm still somewhat hoarse. I may get something posted tonight, but then again, maybe not. We'll see how it goes.
I am currently experiencing technical difficulties with my voice. As I need this for singing Holy Week with my parish's choir, blogging will be very light today and orange juice, medicine, etc. in use instead.
Sorry for the inconvenience. Blogging will resume as soon as I feel stronger.
("Dawn of Flame" will probably be finished on Easter Friday instead of Easter Monday, btw.)
Meanwhile, I recommend to you the services of Librivox, which has a greatly enlarged catalog of public domain audiobooks these days. Also, I'm sure you know all about Father Roderick's brainchild, the SQPN podcast network, but that should cover your Holy Week needs nicely.