First and foremost, Happy Easter Saturday. I hope everyone has had a great Easter. So the octaves are the eight days celebrated after two holidays on the liturgical calendar: Easter and Christmas. The days between the holiday and the eighth day are called solemnities. A solemnity is a special time period of great celebration, but even more so a time to truly consider what took place. Let’s really keep this in mind. You have Christmas celebrating the birth of Our Lord and Easter celebrating the resurrection of Our Lord. Is one day really enough ? Not at all. Let’s keep in mind these events are also two of mysteries of Our Blessed Mother’s Holy Rosary. The third Joyful Mystery we focus on the Love of God and the first Glorious Mystery we focus on faith. Faith and love are two core tenets which nourish us in our journey towards Heaven.
So why is the number eight so important ? Well, eight has been associated in the Christian and Jewish circles as a “new beginning”. We have in the Old Testament Jewish makes circumcised on the eighth day. The baptismal font frequently is eight sides. In a traditional Catholic baptism, the baptism starts at the entrance to the parish, signifying one coming from the outside pagan world and making a “new beginning” amongst the mystical body of Christ (all the faithful). Most of our holy obligations fall on Sunday because that’s considered not so much the first day of the week but rather “an eighth day”. Since we are still in the Octave of Easter, hopefully your Easter ornaments are still up. If not, we’ll learn now for next year, right ?