It is amazing to me how many people who go to church, have grown up in the church and even pastor churches, do not realize there is a Church calendar. No, I do not mean churches having business calendars or facility calendars.
I am not going to write about the specifics of the Church calendar (also known as the Liturgical Year). You can do your own Google search on that one. No, it is just I have been thinking about how little, I, and others and maybe you, take for granted the counter-cultural statement we make when we acknowledge we Christians are on a different schedule.
Your church may not recognize Advent or Lent. No sweat, it is likely you still note Christmas and Easter. Your church may not note Saints' Days or Feast Days, you know it does not make you somehow "unchristian." The traditions of the Church maybe something you celebrate or something that makes you cringe because there is no chapter/verse reference for it. It is okay.
Regardless, it is worth considering that the calendar of the Church offers us a chance to live out the reality of incarnation, that God has intervened in this, our world.
Marian Monahan's quote struck me this past week as she led the final retreat with our Companions In Christ group. As I work to prepare for Palm Sunday and Easter, it just hasn't let go. What keeps striking at my soul is that there is no explanation we can really give for Christmas and Easter. The HOW of the happening of holy intervention in our world we don't fully comprehend. And no, Jesus does not give us the info on this at all.
What Jesus does is give himself, give of himself, give all of himself, so we might BE like him. The calendar of the Church changes our orientation from us being focused on the universe revolves around us (we know what astronomy tells us but our egos say different) and our desires, and instead helps us orient our lives to being centered on God and orbiting the One greater than ourselves.