The Alpha and the Omega
Today is March 25th, the date the West remembered as the Roman calendar day of Christ’s execution and death. Folk in Roman times believed also that people tended to die on the anniversaries of their conceptions. So this is also the feast of the Annunciation, and thus the day which determined the date of Christmas. It was also, during the Age of Faith, the beginning of the European New Year.
So remember, with the Heliand, that today is sometimes merry. Also, Cynewulf linked the Annunciation to Christ’s Ascension and the Last Judgement in his poem “Christ” (Translation as a pdf file; you can read the Old English version at the Labyrinth.)
But also, tongue, praise the glorious battle waged by Christ against death and sin. Compare to “The Dream of the Rood” and the Heliand and “Christ” again.
“By his agony had he fulfilled the words of the prophets, as they had sung aforetime in the world…By his might alone, the King of Glory, the Helm of Heaven, waged war on his old enemies…he led forth from thralldom, from the city of his foes, exceedingly great spoil — an uncountable train of folk, this very multitude on which you gaze.”
Christ the Warrior, Lord of Angels and Men, stand beside Terri Schiavo in her suffering and thirst. But if it be possible, Lord, let this cup of pain be taken from her, and water, food, and health be given her instead. (And honest to goodness, folks, it’s eminently possible. Just give the woman some flippin’ water!)