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The Great Vigil: The Best Liturgical Practice You’ve Never Heard Of

Bonfires. Storytelling. Midnight parades through the neighborhood. Banging on the church door. One of the earliest known liturgical scriptural traditions of the church was a gathering of people sitting in the dark, telling the stories of God’s faithfulness. They were a people dripping with expectation. Their ancestral lineage had fashioned them into a people that had been shaped precisely out of darkness and death into new life. The practice of the Easter Vigil was the first of what would be a formal cycle of celebration for the church. And it rehearsed in habitual form the mythological beauty of God’s transformative work of redemption. The Easter Vigil, in its contemporary form, is seen across Christian traditions. It is celebrated within the…
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