The Parish Church of Saint Matthew Big Lamp ~ Newcastle
Eastertide
Eastertide   is   a   period   of   fifty   days,   which   runs   from   Easter   Day    until   the Day   of   Pentecost .      It   is   the   Church's   season   celebrating   the   Resurrection   of Jesus   Christ.      It   actually   starts   in   the   evening   of   the   Saturday   before   Easter Sunday at the Vigil and First Mass. Jesus'   Resurrection   was   not   a   reversal   out   of   death.      Instead,   by   the   power   of His   Sacrifice,   He   has,   as   it   were,   blasted   through   the   dead   end   of   mortality, opening   a   path   from   this   life   to   reconciliation   and   reunion   with   God.      During Eastertide we contemplate the hope that this Resurrection offers us. The   first   week   of   this   period   is   called   the   Easter   Octave    (=   a   period   of   eight days),   which   is   an   intense   period   of   celebration.      It   ends   on   the   Sunday   after Easter Sunday; this latter Sunday is often called Low Sunday . The   Liturgy   reflects   this   hope   and   joy   in   various   ways   -   not   least   a   liberal sprinkling   of   alleluias   attached   to   the   end   of   the   various   texts   we   sing   and say.      In   church,   the   principal   symbol   of   the   Resurrection   season   is   the   Paschal   Candle ,   consecrated   at   the Easter Vigil and lit at every Liturgy during Eastertide. Forty   Days   into   Eastertide,   we   celebrate   Ascension   Day    when   we   recall   Christ's   return   to   sit   at   the   right hand of God: Jesus   led   the   Eleven   out   as   far   as   Bethany,   and   lifting   up   his   hands   he   blessed   them.      While   he   blessed them, he parted from them, and was carried up into heaven. Luke 24: 50f see also Matt 28: 16ff Ten   days   later,   we   celebrate   the   Day   of   Pentecost .      This   recalls   the   events   recorded   in   the   Book   of   Acts   (2: 1   -   11)   when   the   Holy   Spirit   was   bestowed   on   the   Apostles   (see   also   John   20:   19   -   23).      We   traditionally understand   this   to   mark   the   nexus   between   the   incarnate   Ministry   of   Jesus   and   the   life   of   the   earthly Church.