Liturgy Lesson: Eastertide Canticles and Symbols

Liturgy Lesson: Eastertide Canticles and Symbols

Eastertide is the most important season of the Christian year and is best characterized by the prayerbook canticle for Easter, “Christ is risen, alleluia!” Celebrating the Resurrection, it is the keystone in the arch of Christianity and reminds us that if Christ had not risen, then we, in St. Paul’s words, would still be slaves to sin and death. But He did rise, indeed—and this is a season for celebration, rightly proclaimed by the symbols of the season which point to His victory. One of these, used on our parish prayer list and displayed below, is the combination of the Cross and the abbreviations IC and XC, short for IHCOYC XPICTOC or “Iesous (Jesus) Christos (Christ).” Iesous is a transliteration of the Hebrew "Joshua," meaning "Jehovah is salvation." Christos is a translation of the Hebrew "Messiah," meaning "Anointed One." The same symbol is combined with the Greek word “NIKA” meaning “victory”—incidentally, the same word used for the popular athletic apparel manufacturer, Nike. This little symbol is a quick summary of God’s plan of salvation and empowerment for us, as it shows us who paid our debt to God, and where—and what it gives us in this life and the next—complete victory over everything, even death itself. That is a reason to celebrate!

Collect for the Second Sunday after Easter

ALMIGHTY God, who hast given thine only Son to be unto us both a sacrifice for sin, and also an ensample of godly life; Give us grace that we may always most thankfully receive that his inestimable benefit, and also daily endeavour ourselves to follow the blessed steps of his most holy life; through the same thy Son Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

 

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