Easter Sunday

It is finished. His passion is over. Yes, we will always remember the Passion, but we are not people of suffering, and torture and death. We are people of life and of hope. Jesus Christ has risen from the dead[1]. On October 22, 1978, Pope John Paul II began his pontifical ministry with these words: «Be not afraid. Be not afraid to welcome Christ and accept his power». And few hours ago his Holiness Benedict the XVI says to all those celebrating with him the Easter Vigil «I beg you, let Christ speak to you. He alone has the words of life, yes, and eternal life».

We celebrate Easter this year full of fear for the future: our young people are dying in a war in a distant part of the world, many people are suffering from sexually transmitted diseases than ever before, the porn industry is dominating cyberspace, and then there is the economy.

Let us be honest, probably we come to our parish this Easter day full of fear, but seeking hope, and this is the clue. Hope is here. Jesus Christ has risen from the dead. All is not lost. All is won. He has won. We have won. Death has been conquered. The new world has begun. United with Christ, nothing can destroy us. The worst pains of life cannot rob us of the hope of Christ's life.

In fewer words: the celebration of the Resurrection of the Lord is the celebration of our hope, our joy, our sharing in the New Life of Christ.

We should not be so concerned over all the negatives of the world and be more concerned over the one overwhelming positive which we celebrate today.

Jesus Christ is risen from the dead, and so are we! The deaths in Afghanistan & Iraq, the dissipation of our society, the negatives of our world, and the mistakes of some persons in the Church all tell us that we must fight for the kingdom of God. We must fight to allow the New Life of Jesus Christ to destroy the powers of death within each of us as well as within our society. We must fight for the Lord.

Today the tomb is empty, the Savior lives. Let us pray may His Life change the world or at least change our hearts and minds and attitudes and behaviors. We do not have to continue on in the same old way. We can change. This is the challenge for today. All we have to do is desire the change and ask the good Lord to help us. He came to make all things new, and that includes us.

And of course, we have to think in our Blessed Mother, she is, after the Lord, the most important character today, we can say with all our heart and mind and soul those beautiful word of the liturgy: Queen of Heaven, rejoice, alleluia. / For He whom you did merit to bear, alleluia. Has risen, as he said, alleluia. / Pray for us to God, alleluia. Rejoice and be glad, O Virgin Mary, alleluia. / For the Lord has truly risen, alleluia[2]

[1] Sunday 4th April, 2010. Easter Sunday. Readings: Acts 10:34, 37-43. This is the day the Lord has made; let us rejoice and be glad—Ps 117(118):1-2, 16-17, 22-23. Colossians 3:1-4 /1 Corinthians 5:6-8. John 20:1-9 [St Isidore].
[2] While the authorship of the Regina Caeli is unknown, the hymn has been traced back to the twelfth century. It was in Franciscan use, after Compline, in the first half of the following century. Legend has it that St Gregory the Great heard angels chanting the first three lines one Easter morning in Rome, while following barefoot in a great religious procession the icon of the Virgin painted by Luke the Evangelist. He was thereupon inspired to add the fourth line.

Y entonces uno se queda con la Iglesia, que me ofrece lo único que debe ofrecerme la Iglesia: el conocimiento de que ya estamos salvados –porque esa es la primera misión de la Iglesia, el anunciar la salvación gracias a Jesucristo- y el camino para alcanzar la alegría, pero sin exclusividades de buen pastor, a través de esa maravilla que es la confesión y los sacramentos. La Iglesia, sin partecitas.

laus deo virginique matris