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I am told that my stated childhood ambition was “to be a clown in a circus.” Upon my ordination, my mother said “I see you’ve achieved your ambition.” A devout salt-of-the-earth sort of Christian, she knew how to keep her boy from taking on airs and graces.

Today is “Holy Humo[u]r Sunday”, Risus Paschalis, God’s Joke, the Easter Laugh – the Orthodox tradition goes back to about 13th century and was part of the Roman Catholic tradition in 15th century Bavaria. It was marked by funny stories, hilarious anecdotes, folk-dancing and feasting. It marked the invitation to participate in God’s final laugh over Satan through the resurrection of Christ, a relief from the sombre and reflective season of Lent and Passion Week.

Well, I know on this side of the first Easter we celebrate resurrection every day – but it also helps to participate in the full light and shade spectrum of the divine/human drama.

My lament is to be on leave and not be taking my church through this celebration and giving full vent to my childhood ambition! My opportunity is to look around for a service to attend which just might be observing this tradition.

Happy holy hilarity!

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