Liturgical Time

Even on this earth

In former times the blood of goats and the ashes of a calf were sprinkled on those who were unclean, but they were able to purify only the body.

Now through the grace of God’s Word everyone is made abundantly clean.

If we follow Christ closely we shall be allowed, even on this earth, to stand as it were on the threshold of the heavenly Jerusalem, and enjoy the contemplation of that everlasting feast, like the blessed apostles, who in following the Savior as their leader, showed, and still show, the way to obtain the same gift from God.

They said “See, we have left all things and followed you.”

We too follow Christ, and we keep his feast by deeds rather than by words.

Let nothing be preferred to the Work of God – Rule of Benedict 43:3

The excerpt above is from an Easter letter by Saint Athanasius (died 373 AD), bishop, part of the Office of Readings for the Fifth Sunday in Lent.