Saturday, 11 April 2009


On Holy Saturday all is quiet; the Lord lies in the tomb. The Church waits…

In the Vicarage, the telephone rings…

“O, Hello, Father! I’d like to book a wedding for Easter Saturday next year.”
“Congratulations, good to hear from you! The Saturday after Easter next year, wonderful!”
“Oh, no, the day before Easter. You know, Easter Saturday!”
Well. Actually, Easter Saturday is really the Saturday after Easter. But I’m afraid we don’t marry people on the Saturday before Easter.........”
“Really! I've never heard that before; but my mother and father were married in church on Easter Saturday………… I’m really disappointed. We’ll have to have a word with the Revd So and So down the road! She’ll understand.”

It’s an extreme (and fictional) example; normally (but not always) couples are very happy, having had the situation explained to them, to go for the week after.
A little bit of friendly and patient teaching goes a long way. But many of us have had conversations something like that over the years. And in a faith community with very elastic boundaries and multiple choices in theology and practice and very little and diminishing authority to which one can appeal, this is the inevitable consequence.
Of course, this isn’t a recent development. We probably have to thank Henry VIII, Edward VI and their plundering cronies and apologists (step forward Archbishop Cranmer) for beginning the process of desacralising the calendar as they desacralised many of our church buildings in England and Wales - and what goes on in them. I'll get off my hobby-horse now.

But please, Classic FM, the BBC and anyone else out there, repeat after me:


Today is Holy Saturday. The Church waits…..

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