Sunday, March 27, 2016

Easter Blessings!

Resurrection by Fra Angelico 1440
Such a joyous night! To remember salvation history and our own reception into the Church. If Lent was about mortification and putting to death just one evil in our lives, then Easter is about letting one virtue arise! Alleluia!!! May this Easter joy be yours now and always!

I was looking through some artwork and came across a page dedicated to Bible art. Look through. Which one is your favorite? I almost picked the Rembrandt because I love the way he plays with light and dark, but in the end, this painting by Fra Angelico is the one I kept coming back to because it has a storied quality. And if I were illiterate, this is what would bring this amazing story back for me.

We sing Hail Thee Festival Day every year and I never get tired. I didn't realize it was such an old hymn. Text was written by Venantius Fortunatus (530-609) and translated by Maurice Frederick Bell (1906). Enjoy!

Refrain: Hail thee, festival day!
Blest day that art hallowed forever;
day wherein Christ arose,
breaking the kingdom of death.


Lo, the fair beauty of earth,
from the death of the winter arising,
every good gift of the year
now with its Master returns. Refrain

He who was nailed to the Cross
is God and the Ruler of all things;
all things created on earth
worship the Maker of all. Refrain

God of all pity and power,
let thy word be assured to the doubted;
light on the third day returns:
rise, Son of God, from the tomb! Refrain

Ill doth it seem that thy limbs
should linger in lowly dishonor;
ransom and price of the world,
veiled from the vision of men. Refrain

Loosen, O Lord, the enchained,
the spirits imprisoned in darkness;
rescue, recall into life those
who are rushing to death. Refrain

 Ill it beseemeth that thou,
by whose hand all things are encompassed,
captive and bound shouldst remain,
deep in the gloom of the rock. Refrain

 Rise now, O Lord, from the grave
and cast off the shroud that enwrapped thee;
thou art sufficient for us;
nothing without thee exists. Refrain

Mourning they laid thee to rest,
who art Author of life and creation;
treading the pathway of death,
life thou bestowedst on man. Refrain

Show us thy face once more,
that the ages may joy in thy brightness;
give us the light of day,
darkened on earth at thy death. Refrain

Out of the prison of death
thou art rescuing numberless captives;
freely they tread in the way
whither their Maker has gone. Refrain

Jesus has harrowed hell;
he had led captivity captive;
darkness and chaos and death
flee from the face of the light. Refrain  


Mirka Breen said...

When I think of Easter, the central imagery, for me, is a light at the end of a tunnel Blessed, indeed. My wishes for you and all of us.

Unknown said...

I hope you and your family had a wonderful Easter!

Johnell said...

Love that painting. I've never seen it before. Carl Bloch does some of my favorites, but that is very illustrative. Happy Easter.