Blogs » J.Q. Tomanek of Victoria » Stabbed in the side

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I truly hope everyone had a blessed Easter. This liturgical holiday is the highest in the Christian belief. Did Christ perform miracles? Did He teach wise sayings? Was He a good teacher? Moral champion? Ancient philosopher?

All these matters little if this past Sunday never happened. The main Christian tenet that validates all the other teachings begins with the Paschal Mystery. The crucifixion, death, and Resurrection of Christ is the central event of history that defines Christians. Prove the Resurrection false, and you have disproved all Christian thought and belief.

C.S. Lewis is well known for narrowing it down to three choices. Jesus must have been a lunatic, liar, or God Himself. Jesus did and said too many things that only God can do. According to the Holy Writ, Jesus forgave sinners, healed people, resurrected the dead, and even called Himself “I AM,” the sacred name of God from the burning bush. So either Jesus thought Himself able to do these things and could not really accomplish any of them (lunatic), Jesus knew he could not do any of these things and was trying to pull the wool over His sheep’s eyes (liar), or His power to do these things really did emanate from Himself and therefore deservingly is God Almighty. These are really the three options. The option of only a good moral sage is not available.

As the Israelites commemorate their exodus from Egypt by celebrating a memorial feast known as Passover, the Catholic also celebrates the memorial feast of our exodus from sin. Both meals have a priest, both have a victim (lamb), both require shedding of blood, both require eating of flesh. As the ancient priesthood offered the unblemished lamb for the Korban Pesach and used the sakin to sacrifice the sin offering, so the Lamb of God is also stabbed in the side by the slaughter knife, a spear, of the soldier. As the matzo is consumed in the Jewish Passover, so another Host is in remembrance of Him.

As Catholics, we are given 40 days of Lent to prepare our spirit for the celebration of the Paschal Mystery. That 40 day islam is much different than a simple New Year’s Resolution for at the end of the 40, we break open the tomb of sacrifice like a bottle of bubbly. As our bodies have offered up something good, now we are encouraged to celebrate and this brings gratitude for the sacrifice we undertook. Instead of 40 days to celebrate, the sees the 40 and raises 10 to give us 50 days of Easter season! So as we make merry for the next 50 days, Happy Paschaltide!