8 Facts for the Octave (Part 1)


As y'all probably know, even though the rest of the world has already put away their One Direction Easter Baskets, and Walgreen's has put Cadbury eggs on 75% off clearance, we here in the Catholic world are still partying hard. Each day of the Octave is a solemnity, each day is like Easter Sunday itself. Awesome, right?

If you've noticed, I am a big fan of numbers (e.g. Seven Last Words Reflections, Five Reasons I'm Excited for the New Translations), so here comes another numbered list.

Just as we pass the halfway point of the Easter Octave, in honor of the continued jubilation, I put together 8 Facts about the Octave.

Yes, that's right, I am putting an octet in your Octave.

So begins this list that includes fun topics like baseball, Disney movies, and shopping - 8 Facts For The Octave.

I'm going to break it into two parts, so hit the jump for the first four facts.

#1 - 8 Crazy Nights

Okay, we'll start this list off with some basics.

Mr. Adam Sandler, although Happy Gilmore remains one of my favorite guilty pleasures, I can't let you get away with claiming that our Jewish brethren are the only ones who celebrate for 8 days.

No, sir - we Catholics party hard as well, and we can see this 8 day party highlighted in the liturgical celebration throughout the Easter Octave.

Check out the opening of the preface for the Eucharistic prayer for every day of the Octave:
It is truly right and just,
our duty and our salvation,
at all times to acclaim you, O Lord,
but on this day above all
to laud you yet more gloriously...
You see that? It says "on this day." This means that even today, Thursday,  for Catholics isn't really Thursday. Nope, today is like Easter Sunday itself. Today we celebrate the glory of the Resurrection even when the world won't.

#2 - Emperor's Everyone's New Clothes

Check out JP's new Member's Only jacket - $2 and some change at our local thrift store.
(NB: Okay, it isn't technically new, but whatever)
Alright, I'm not trying to get anyone in trouble here, so I'm not saying you need to go on a shopping spree, but there is a beautiful tradition of buying new clothes for Easter. Why? It represents the idea of putting on a new life in Christ. Get it? Put on a new life, put on new clothes.

Think about the Easter vigil. The Christian initiates put on new white clothes after they were baptized. In fact, the old tradition was that Christian initiates would receive a white robe upon their baptism and they would wear it for the entire week of the Octave. An entire week - to school, to work, out to dinner, while riding horses. They would only take off these symbols of their new life on the following Sunday - this is why this Sunday used to be called in Latin: Dominica in albis depositis.

So, there you go, that's the deeper meaning of Easter clothes.

Now, that's why there's an old Irish saying that goes: "For Christmas, food and drink; for Easter, new clothes."

I mean, I would say: "For Christmas, food and drink; for Easter, new clothes... and food... and drink," but you get the point.

#3 - Take me out to the Ball Game
I apologize for the ridiculous image choice.

Here's one for all my folks heading to the Giants home opener tomorrow.

There is a special connection between the Paschal celebration and the National Pastime. In Albert G. Spalding's 1911 book America´s National Game, he describes this unique relationship:
"It is supposed that ball-tossing had a deep symbolical meaning when played in the spring of the year; and that the tossing of the ball was intended to first typify the upspringing of the life of nature after the gloom of winter. And, whether this was the case among the people of antiquity or not, it is a remarkable fact that the ecclesiastics of the early Church adopted this symbol and gave it a very special significance by meeting in the churches on Easter Day, and throwing up a ball from hand to hand, to typify The Resurrection."
So there you have it.

Every time you see that ball fly through the sky, remember the Son who rose for your sake.

Also, Lent's over so go eat a Ballpark Dog (or five).

#4 - Say what?!


And tons of them. 

There has been a long-standing tradition of a special greeting that people have used in many different cultures around the world to greet each other during the Octave. This Paschal Greeting differs from culture to culture and there are even variations within a culture.

The traditional greeting in Latin would be "Christus resurrexit!" which means "Christ is risen!" Now, the response takes usually one of two forms - either "et apparuit Simoni, Alleluia!" which means "and He appeared unto Simon, Alleluia!" or "resurrexit vere!" which means "He is risen indeed!"

Check out how cool this practice was before. People used to answer their phones with this greeting. People would answer their doors with this greeting. I say, let's bring the practice back! Imagine including this greeting in all of the emails we send. Imagine if this greeting trended on twitter for the whole Octave.

Here are a few more Paschal Greetings in other languages with their translations. Enjoy:

Χριστός ανέστη! (Hristós anésti) - Christ has Risen
Αληθώς ανέστη! (Alithós anésti) - Truly he has Risen

Christos Voskres! - Christ is Risen!
Voyistynu Voskres! - Indeed He is Risen!

Քրիստոս յառեաւ ի մեռելոց (Christos haryav i merelotz!)- Christ is risen from the dead
Օրհնեալ է յառութիւնն Քրիստոսի (Orhnial e Haroutiunn Christosi!) - Blessed is the resurrection of Christ

Христос воскресе (Xristos voskrese) - Christ resurrected
воистину воскресе (voistinu voskrese) - Truly resurrected

المسيح قام (el maseeh qam) -  Christ has risen  
حقاً قام (haqan qam) - Truly he has risen 

Krisztus feltámadt! - Christ has risen
Valóban, feltámadt! - Truly, he has risen

Hristos a inviat! - Christ has risen!
Adevarat ca a inviat! - Truly, He has risen

And for JP,
 ハリストス復活!(Harisutosu fukkatsu!) - Announce His resurrection 
実に復活!(Jitsu ni fukkatsu!) - Indeed the resurrection!

Well those are the first four things.

Check back tomorrow for the other half of this list, and keep on partying y'all.

Oh yea, and make sure you eat some Meat tomorrow (more on that to come!).