Mass Readings: Genesis 1:1–2:2 or 1:1,26–31/Genesis 22:1–18 or 22:1–2,9,10–13,15–18/Exodus 14:15–15:1/Isaiah 54:5–14/Isaiah 55:1–11/Baruch 3:9–15,32–4:4/Ezekiel 36:16–17,18–28/Romans 6:3–11/Matthew 28:1–10

Work of Bees

With the church in darkness at the beginning of the Easter Vigil, the Paschal candle — which represents the light of Christ — is lit. Then the congregants’ candles are lit from the Paschal candle and the Paschal Proclamation is recited or, ideally, chanted.

Listen for the words, “O Holy Father, accept this candle, a solemn offering, the work of bees and of your servants’ hands.” Until last year, this had been omitted from the official translation of the ancient Latin prayer. I’m glad it’s back. The image of the bees — makers of the wax that humans formed into a candle that concretely represents Christ — delights me. Christ’s coming not only redeemed humans, but lifted even the humble bees to the level of the divine. Alleluia!

Prayer: All creation rejoices, Lord Jesus Christ, in Your Resurrection.