Society of Saint Pius X Africa

April 2000

Dear Faithful,

On the 9th of this month we enter Passiontide, During these last two weeks of Lent, leading up to Easter, the Church is at pains to make us reline the events surrounding Our Lord's death. All the thoughts of the Church are turned to Christ. She (the Church) continues to offer to God the Lenten penances, but she now asks of us our full attention on Our Lord's Passion. Thus, the austere character of Lent increases. The Church veils the altar Cross and statues with violet. On Maundy Thursday she strips the altar and silences not only organ but bells too. The interior of the Church, where so many graces are bestowed on the faithful, takes on the aspect of unaccustomed mourning.

Passiontide will culminate with Holy Week, the "Triduum Sacrum" - leading up to the joys of Easter. One cannot encourage enough the faithful to participate at these ceremonies - Palm Sunday, Maundy Thursday, Good Friday, the Easter Vigil and Mass of Easter night.

Having been generous during the time of Lent, let us increase that generosity in these last days leading up to Easter, meditating and "living"' with Our Lord the diverse aspects of His Sacred Passion. Indeed, Holy Week being the celebration of the Paschal mystery, the source of our salvation, causes us to relive Our Lord's redeeming action from His Passion to His Resurrection.

Let us, with Our Lady, stand at the foot of the Cross, "Stabat Mater dolorosa" so that we may share in the joys of His glorious Resurrection "Resurrexit sicut dixit".

A holy and blessed Easter to you all,

Fr. A. Esposito

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