Flimsy Sanity: My Favorite Easter

Flimsy Sanity

In individuals, insanity is rare; but in groups, parties, nations and epochs, it is the rule. - Friedrich Nietzsche

Sunday, April 08, 2007

My Favorite Easter

Our family never made a big deal of any holidays although we usually observed them by eating a big meal. I remember only one Easter egg hunt and that was for boiled eggs dipped in dye - no pursuit of chocolate bunnies or marshmallow chicks for us. I don't think it was a poverty issue, more just a no-nonsense, unsentimental approach to everything. And yes, dyed boiled eggs are just as bland but uglier than non dyed ones but we ate them because we did not waste. If I had been smarter I would have tried to find fewer.

I do have one memory of one Easter that I cherish. Our family was what I like to call "casual Catholics", not quite fallen but not what one would call a "Good Catholic" either. We would go to church on Sunday occasionally, and more often than not ate chicken on Fridays in those days when the practice was forbidden. Our church had (and still does for all I know) a thing called "perpetual adoration". This means someone is praying in the church at all times and "Good Catholics" sign up for a "church hour" in which they do an hour on their knees - even at 2 in the morning. We did not sign up for duty.

Anyway, back to my favorite Easter story. Our family did not arrive early to the church this particular Easter and all the pews were full, so we stood in the back. When it came time for the service, the priest said, "If you can't come every Sunday, don't just come on Easter." My dad was a quiet man and would never do anything to make a scene. If someone wronged him, lied to him, or sometimes just irritated him, he would ignore them for the rest of their life (I do the same). So we stayed for the rest of the mass but we took the priest's advice and never went back. All I can say is Hallelujah for the Easter that freed me.


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