Editor’s Note: Holy Saturday teaches us to let go of past hurts and look ahead with hope, even in times of greatest uncertainty.
Holy Saturday is a unique day in the Church year. There is no celebration of daily Mass. Until the celebration of the Easter vigil tonight, this day acts as a kind of in between space. While Jesus’ body is in the tomb, we wait.
During this time of waiting, it can be helpful to place ourselves alongside the disciples. As far as the disciples knew, this was the end. They witnessed his crucifixion and burial. All in all, Good Friday probably had a tone of finality to it.
However, there is a very significant distinction between finality and despair. The disciples didn’t know what was going to happen next. No one did. Therefore, they had to proceed towards a very uncertain future armed with what certainty they did have.
Strengthened by the words and instructions of Jesus, they continued forward. They had to. Although they didn’t know whether or not Jesus would be back, they did know that their own journeys were just beginning. Their time of walking with Jesus on earth may have come to an end, but they were only just starting their own ministries to the people.
In this interim period between Good Friday and Easter Sunday, the apostles had to let go of Jesus. Scripture doesn’t tell us what the apostles did on this day. However, it can be assumed that they didn’t each go off to a separate room and mourn alone. When the women learn of Jesus’ resurrection the next day, it’s implied that they tell the eleven disciples at the same time, which implies that they were already all together.
In times of uncertainty, it’s natural to gravitate towards what is certain. It’s normal to cling to what we know to be stable when everything else is unstable. On this day before Easter Sunday, let us hold on to what we know to be true – that when we awake tomorrow Jesus will have risen to new life, a life in which he continually invites us to take part.
Reflection Question: How can you keep the hope of the Resurrection with you all year?
Featured image: adaptation of photo from Wikimedia – creative commons