Pauca Verba is Latin for A Few Words.

Sunday, April 10, 2016

Rue Anemone and Easter Expectation

This delicate Rue Anemone is blooming along the edge of the woods here. Its range spans from east to west about a third of the country and comes in pure white or white with pink tints. I feel lucky to have the pink-tinted kind. 

Rue Anemone is frequently found in the stories of ancient mythology and is sometimes called wind flower as it is imagined to open only in breezes and winds. But it further symbolizes expectation, which is lovely for the Easter Season we're in these days. I'm thinking of the priest's Mass-prayer, Libera Nos, prayed immediately after the Our Father. The old translation is linguistically more accessible:

Deliver us, Lord, from every evil, and grant us peace in our day. In your mercy keep us free from sin and protect us from all anxiety as we wait in joyful hope for the coming of our Savior, Jesus Christ.

As we wait in joyful hope. Joyful expectation. And for the Christian this means: I trust that God has won. Remember the Easter hymn?

The strife is o'er the battle done;
Now is the Victor's triumph won;
Now be the song of praise begun:

Death's mightiest pow'rs have done their worst,
And Jesus has his foes dispersed;
Let shouts of praise and joy outburst:

He closed the yawning gates of hell;
The bars from heav'ns high portals fell;
Let hymns of praise his triumph tell:

On the third morn he rose again,
Glorious in majesty to reign;
O let us swell the joyful strain:

We live with the Easter myrrh-bearing women who came to the tomb at sunrise. Sunrise is symbolically the time of the greatest contest - a cosmic contest - when light pushes the darkness away. It is a time of great tension, but surety as well. 

To live on this planet is to live in that tension. But if we believe that Jesus is risen from the dead in his body, that his Resurrection is not a hallucination or wishful thinking, then everything is different for us. 


  1. It is good to have expectations, but they also can lead to disappointment. Sadly, on this morning I can't help but feel this way.

  2. Oh yes! Beautifully said, Father. To live in this belief, of the risen Christ gives hope and energy in this broken world and His gift of the Eucharist fulfills that completely.

  3. Father, you have an eye for catching the beauty in nature. It shows us that it is advantageous to be more aware. Stopping, looking, listening.

  4. These days in the Northeast are days of great nature-tension: the cold doesn't want to surrender. But the sun is increasing and it will have to give way. And so with our Good Friday world with all of its death and hate: the Easter Christ is champion; victor. "As we wait in joyful hope." Blessed Sunday to everyone!

  5. I try to revisit the post later in the day to see the comments and your responses which helps me to reflect more deeply on what is written. As the Sun came out and warmed us brightly, I feel the pink in your Rue Anemone showing itself more vividly. The rays of sun help to clear our hearts and minds of the lurking shadows and opens our eyes to beauty.

    1. Yes indeed! The sun does more than give us light for our optical sight but by all means, greet it in the morning for inner light. It is one of the first gifts of the new day. Everything is a gift!

    2. I do believe that Father. Thank you for sharing your spiritual gifts with us.

  6. How many times do we say that prayer at Mass and not think about what we are asking? It is such a powerful plea. I will certainly say these words with more thought in the future. Sorry to say that I just join in the response without understanding what I am saying sometimes.

  7. Isn't it a powerful plea! I think it is one of the most beautiful prayers in the Mass - joyful hope!