by Sr Nunother
I’ve been thinking about words. Even a good word, a positive word, can be a weapon when delivered with a sarcastic voice inflection. A seemingly innocent word can trigger a negative response, depending on an individual’s history. Words can also encourage and set free, inspire and comfort. During Lent, a specific word is suspended from the Liturgy of the Hours. It’s a word that I personally miss singing, although not one I often — if ever — speak. That word is alleluia. It translates as “a song of praise to God” and “an expression of joy that a thing hoped or waited for has happened.” In the western church, the Lenten omission of alleluia dates back to the fifth century. It’s an appropriate restraint as we reflect on our faith and walk with Jesus as he journeys to the cross. On Easter Sunday Lauds, alleluia will be sung twenty-four times. It will seem like more. Alleluia! A beautiful word to anticipate.