THE LITURGICAL SEASON OF ELIJAH-CROSS-MOSES
The great solemnity of the Glorious Cross that we celebrate on September 14th is the basic theme meditated on and absorbed in all through this liturgical period of Elijah-Cross-Moses. This feast emerged as the second Easter, especially in Eastern Traditions, in the second half of the liturgical year, parallel to the Easter in the first half. During this period the faithful try their best to have an experience of the heavenly bliss here on earth itself, a foretaste of the intimate union with the Divine Person. Jesus’ transfiguration on Mount Tabor was in fact such an experience to the selected three. It was so fascinating and absorbing that Saint Peter exclaimed: “Master, it is well that we are here” (Mk 9:5). The Glorious Cross, we know, is the sign of the glorified Jesus (Matthew 24:30).
Today we are given such an experience in the Church in Qurbana celebration. When we really have the Tabor experience in our Qurbana celebration, we will simply love celebrating it as solemn as possible and remain immersed in it. The Eucharistic Communion really becomes the participation in the heavenly banquet, becoming one with our Bridegroom Jesus in His Risen Body. During this liturgical season the believers try earnestly to transfigure themselves to Jesus, to dream and foresee their real encounter with Jesus at the end of time and prepare fully for that exceptional and unique meeting with the Lord and God.
The glorious Cross is the sign of Jesus’ victory over death, sin and suffering. It is the Tree of Life, Stem of Jesse (Jesus), Staff of Comfort (Holy Spirit), Ark of Noah (Church), the sign of Jesus’ life, Resurrection, and Christian perfection.
This liturgical period is, indeed, a God-given occasion for meditating on the end of time and the last judgement. The believers are called to foresee their real encounter with their Creator, Redeemer, Sanctifier, Lord and God, make an examination of their real life here on earth, repent on all the failures, do necessary reparation, turn completely to the Lord, and commit themselves unconditionally to Him. They are prompted to raise themselves fully to the level of the Divine. The liturgical celebrations in the Church, especially the Holy Qurbana, are such occasions for giving them the Divine encounter and experience.