Easter Reflection 2019

Greetings from Pittsburgh! Happy Easter! We hope that everyone has a wonderful Easter Sunday. Our friend and writer Claude Menesguen has provided a short reflection for us to share. I would like to think if we lived closer we might be sharing some St. Emilion wine with Claude during the wonderful season of Easter!

(We included the following in the French version we sent this morning.
Please know that our hearts were with you this past week as we saw the images of the fire at Notre Dame. We were blessed to visit Notre Dame a few times and mourn with you the damage done to this magnificent structure. But in this Easter season we believe and hope that the restoration will return Notre Dame to its full glory.)


Elisabeth Leseur and Easter – Claude Menesguen April 2019

I remember an Italian poem, “La Gioia”, that I learned a long time ago at the Lycée de Marseille. I believe it is by the writer Edmondo de Amicis.

He tells the following story:

One morning at home, a man receives a visit from joy. Before hugging it close to his heart, he runs from room to room within his house shouting: “joy came to visit me”. But nobody answered.

Everything is sad, he must let go of joy.

Joy is sharing. The joy of Easter must be shared.

Elisabeth can only receive the joy of Easter in a painful solitude.

She lived intensely the emotions of Holy Week, especially Wednesday, Good Friday and Holy Saturday.

On the other hand, we feel that the celebration of Easter is a challenge for her. She has no one with whom to share the joy of the Resurrection. For her loved ones, Easter Sunday is a Sunday like any other.

She attributes to her “fatigue and physical exhaustion the deprivation of the delicate sweetness of communion.” (March 25, 1913).

One rather believes what she writes elsewhere: “It is a double and very painful sacrifice, that of my soul’s loneliness.”

With her usual courage, she concludes: “What does spiritual joy matter to one who feels alive?”

Official responsibility must prevail.

Moreover, she enters Lent with a set of resolutions towards God, towards herself and towards her neighbors.

How sad it may be that Elisabeth did not experience – she who loved the great liturgies so much – the Light shared during Easter Vigil on Holy Saturday, which prepares one so well for the joy of the Resurrection.