After the Virus – A Holy Saturday or Easter Sunday Consciousness?

by | Apr 8, 2020 | Formation, Reflections | 5 comments

Questions about life after the virus

The question on everyone’s mind now is “when will it end?” When will tragic loss of lives and the grief of so many families already and soon-to-be afflicted end? The larger question is still largely unasked. How will we live? There are many ways to answer that question.

The most obvious answer to the latter question is not to focus on details affecting our consciousness. No doubt, there will be many changes in the way that people learn, the way that they will work the way that they will communicate with one another and even the way the people worship God. I leave such details up to “the futurists.”

The not so obvious answer to the question is to step back and look at how this experience will affect our world view, how we make sense of the world. We face a choice. Will we think of ourselves as living in a Holy Saturday world or an Easter Sunday world?

Holy Saturday  and Easter Sunday worlds

A Holy Saturday world is the world of the disciples as they began their journey on the Road to Emmaus. They were broken-hearted, confused, hopeless.

An Easter Sunday world is the world of the disciples when their eyes were opened in breaking of the bread. They were filled with relief, excitement, and joy. But they did not understand how radically opening their eyes would change their view of themselves as loved by God and called to recognize others as their brothers and sisters.

Saul on the road to Damascus needed to spend time with others as he tried to understand what had happened to him and the meaning of the question “Why do you persecute me”?

The early church depicted in the Acts of the Apostles struggled to understand the implications of a systemic change more fundamental than they first thought.

The life death and resurrection of Jesus as the most momentous change ever

Each of the above people was like us. They knew something world-shaking had happened. But, with them, we do not know how radically it would “change their way of thinking” (the root meaning of repent).

At the last supper, Jesus washed the feet of his friends (Did Judas already leave and if he had not would Jesus have washed his feet also?) Then he pointedly asked… “Do you understand what I have done” If I, your, master and teacher (and the Word made flesh) love you so much that I will give up my life for you and my enemies? “Do this  in memory of me.” Wash one another’s feet. If you do, you will open your eyes to each and every one of your suffering brothers and sisters.

Talk about a “change in our way of thinking.” (Remember ‘repent” really means “change your way of thinking”.)

THE question going forward…

Am I ready to change my way of thinking and live as a follower of Jesus, the foot washer? (I know I am not there yet.)

See also




  1. Tom McKenna

    Imaginative treatment of the contrast between Holy Saturday and Easter Sunday

  2. Ann Mary Dougherty

    According to John’s Gospel, the washing of the feet came before Judas left the Passover meal. As the Holy Father said in his homily this morning, Jesus called Judas, friend. I feel sure he would have washed his feet. However, time in John is rather fluid, so we really do not know the order of events that night.

    Thank you, John, for your frequent, interesting insights.

    • John Freund, CM

      Thanks for your comment. I personally agree that he would have washed Judas feet if Judas had let him. Just think of t\his words on the crosses… Father forgive them.

  3. Mary Solomon

    I think that some people who will receive checks from the government really do not need them. If they would donate them to St. Vincent DePaul the money would go into the hands of the truly poor of our society, to people who do not receive government checks. We could do so much with that money.


    Thank you . . .