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This is the night...

posted Mar 26, 2018, 7:40 AM by Steven Vaughan   [ updated Mar 26, 2018, 7:43 AM ]
This year, the Easter Vigil on Saturday evening will begin with a different musical setting of the Exsultet. In this new version by Tony Alonso, the procession of the Paschal Candle, which includes our acclamations "Christ our Light/Thanks be to God," moves seamlessly into the Easter Proclamation.

The Exsultet is the song of praise that the Church offers to Christ on the night of his rising. This great poem takes us through the long journey of humanity to a cosmic look into the future, to the Second Coming of Christ. For the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, Fr. Michael J. Flynn explains “Despite its antiquity, this text still serves splendidly as a present-day expression of Easter joy. [It] also provides a preview of the scriptural and theological themes that will ground the rest of the Easter Vigil liturgy. Salvation history, especially God’s deliverance of his Chosen People from Egyptian slavery and exile are prominent both in the Exsultet, and the extended Liturgy of the Word that will follow. The candle present before the assembly is likened to the pillar of fire which guided Israel in its desert journey; their miraculous passage through the Red Sea serves as both a sign of deliverance and as a prefiguring of the waters of Baptism. Having recalled key moments of the Old Covenant, the New Covenant between God and humanity is proclaimed eloquently in terms of the brilliant Light of Christ dispelling the darkness of sin and death for all time.”

The Exsultet urges us to rejoice with all creation in the Resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, and incessantly reminds us This is the night...