Dear Friends of Carmel,
These words of the hymn, Regina Caeli, pour forth from joyful hearts at the hour of Compline on Easter evening and all during Paschaltide:
Rejoice, Queen of Heaven! Alleluia!
For He Whom thou didst merit to bear, Alleluia!
Hath risen as He said, Alleluia!
The past forty days, and especially these last days of Holy Week, we have followed in Our Lord’s footsteps as He labored to overturn the kingdom of Satan, definitively conquering sin and death. At His side and in our company, has been His Blessed Mother – and our Mother. Her heart, so perfectly joined to her Son’s, tasted all bitterness and sorrow and was broken at the foot of the Cross.
But what must have been her joy on Easter morning! How perfectly must she have partaken in the supreme joy of His victory, she who so perfectly partook in His suffering. During Lent, we prayed in another Marian hymn, the Stabat Mater, “Let me share with thee His pain / Who for all my sins was slain / Who for me in torments died.” Now may she, who is our model in suffering with Christ, also give us a share in her celestial joy – the joy of Easter.
The light of the Resurrection is eternal! No darkness may reverse or conceal it. Christ, our Victim and our Savior, reigns, “despite His enemies”. May this serene and holy light penetrate the souls of all the redeemed and renew the Church of our Risen King. We pray it may soothe the sorrows that burden your lives and rekindle in your hearts the hope of His glorious victory, a defeat only in appearance. Suffering and death belong to this transitory world. On this day, Our Lord transformed them into the gateway to life everlasting.
A very blessed Easter to all of you from all of us here at Carmel!
Your Carmelite Sisters