Green is the liturgy’s color for ordinary time. Not white, the bright light of Eastertime, or red the color of blood and fire. or purple the color of penance. Green is earth’s color, color of slow growing trees and grasses, of ordinary time.
An unknown 4th century spiritual writer describes the ordinary ways the Holy Spirit works in us. “In varied and different ways” invisible grace leads us. Ordinary time doesn’t mean that every day’s the same. Sometimes we find ourselves sad at the state of things; sometimes we joyfully hold the whole world in our arms. Sometimes we feel helpless; sometimes we think there’s nothing we can’t do. Sometimes we’re brave; sometimes we escape into the supposed safety of ourselves looking for peace.
“… The soul becomes like any other human being.” Which means, I guess, that we don’t feel spiritual at all.
Far from taking us away from the human condition, the Spirit leads us by human steps in human time. Ordinary time is the natural roller-coaster of life, all right, but the Spirit leads us on.
That’s why the psalms are such wonderful prayers. They’re the great prayers of ordinary time. They take us from one human experience to another. If you don’t experience what a certain psalm describes, wait awhile–you will.
Green is the Season
Green is the season after Pentecost.
The Holy Ghost in an abstracted place
spreads out the languid summer of His peace,
unrolls His hot July.
O leaves of love, O chlorophyll of grace.
Native to all is this contemplative summer.
The soul that finds its way through Pentecost
knows this green solitude at once as homeland.
Only the heart, earth held and time engrossed,
dazed by this unforeknown and blossoming nowhere,
troubles itself with adjectives like “lost.”
Jessica Powers, 1954