Feast of the Resurrection
Holy Eucharist, Rite II
Our Easter Celebration opens with elements of the Great Vigil of Easter (the origin of Easter sunrise services), which began in the darkness between sunset on Holy Saturday and sunrise on Easter morning.
At the rear of the Church, we will first ignite the "new fire," from which the Paschal Candle is lit. The Paschal Candle remains lit (at least for worship) "continuously" through the feast of Pentecost, a period known as the "Great Fifty Days of Easter."
We will also renew our Baptismal Vows. In the early Church, Holy Baptism occurred during the Great Vigil of Easter, and it concluded a three year time of preparation (during which infiltrators could be weeded out in the days before the Church was allowed to operate openly).
The Risen Christ will be proclaimed with the words, "Alleluia! Christ is Risen!"
The People respond with, "He is risen indeed! Alleluia!"
Our long abstinence from Alleluias thus comes to an end with much joyful noise.
(Bring bells to ring at that time.)
From there we move to our Festival Holy Eucharist, to celebrate the Risen Christ.