Between Death and Resurrection

Today is Holy Saturday, the day on which we wait at the tomb.

This is the time during which Jesus “descended into hell,” as we proclaim when we recite the Apostles’ Creed. The morning prayer in the Magnificat comments in respect of this proclamation that “God does not redeem from afar. The Word descended into our humanity; the Lord descended into the depths of our suffering; Christ descended into the very realm of death itself in order to set free its captives.”

In a meditation on Holy Saturday, Pope Benedict XVI said this:

Holy Saturday is the day of the ‘death of God,’ the day which expresses the unparalleled experience of our age, anticipating the fact that God is simply absent, that the grave hides him, that he no longer awakes, no longer speaks, so that one no longer needs to gainsay him but can simply overlook him….Christ strode through the gate of his final loneliness; in his Passion he went down into the abyss of our abandonment. Where no voice can reach us any longer, there is he. Hell is thereby overcome, or, to be more accurate, death, which was previously hell, is hell no longer. Neither is the same any longer because there is life in the midst of death, because love dwells in it.

In between preparations for our celebration of the Resurrection, take some time today to honor this day. Be with the Holy Saturday experience.