Will You Feast or Binge Next Sunday?
After intense periods of asceticism, the temptation is to binge: to go back to all of our old habits, even to excess. The Church points us, rather, to festivity: Christian feasting.
We are not used to Christian festivity, as our culture inclines more to partying, having fun simply for its own sake or as a pleasurable distraction.
A Christian feast, however, honors God through culture: spending time joyfully with others to celebrate through eating and drinking, music and dancing. Genuine festivity avoids sinful extremes, because the purpose of its merry making is to give glory to God in thanksgiving for our salvation.
You might be wondering, is this legit? Does God really want us to have a good time in order to honor him during the holiest days of the year? Glad you asked!
God himself established a cycle of feasts for his people Israel. “Moses declared to the people of Israel the appointed feasts of the Lord,” which included the feasts of Passover, First Fruits, Weeks, Trumpets, Booths, and the Day of Atonement (Lev 23:44). And in case you might be thinking that this is just an Old Testament thing, St. Paul says, “Christ, our paschal lamb, has been sacrificed. Let us, therefore, celebrate the festival” (1 Corinthians 5:7-8). We can see this in practice in Acts of the Apostles: “And day by day, attending the temple together and breaking bread in their homes, they partook of food with glad and generous hearts, praising God and having favor with all the people” (Acts 2:46–47).
God wants us to be joyful on holy days! Our celebration has to go beyond the walls of the church and into our homes. We need to gather our family and friends together and feast! This will show that we are truly joyful for the great gifts God has given us.
The Easter Season from Exodus starts April 9 here!
Dr. Staudt holds a Ph.D. from Ave Maria University and B.A. and M.A. in Catholic Studies from the University of St. Thomas (St. Paul, MN). He serves as Director of Content for Exodus and as Visiting Associate Professor at the Augustine Institute in Denver. He is the author of How the Eucharist Can Save Civilization (TAN), Restoring Humanity: Essays on the Evangelization of Culture (Divine Providence Press) and The Beer Option: Brewing a Catholic Culture Yesterday & Today (Angelico Press).
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