Easter Vigil 10:00 PM—20 April AD
Easter Sunday 10:00 AM—21 April AD 2019
Durer: The Resurrection, A.D.1510.
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Please allow me to wish
you a happy Easter—for it should be a season of happiness and rejoicing.
And let me thank all those of you that contributed in one way or another
toward the solemnity of this celebration—your efforts are certainly
appreciated—our Lord knows who you are.
Hopefully, you have all
made a pretty good Lent, and understand the nature of this feast, either
through your reading of the Sacred Scriptures or by having participated in
the Masses of Lent and Holy Week. If you have done these things, then you
understand something of the joy that a Holy Easter brings.
It is possible, though,
that the joy of the season still remains a bit one sided. Christ has done
so much for us that we find it difficult if not impossible to respond in
turn. We were inescapably mired in sin; He humbled Himself beyond all
reason to become one of us; He shared our human existence; He suffered and
died for us; and He carried us with Him out of the grave in His
resurrection on Easter Sunday, conquering sin and death.
And, lest we forget,
directly linked to this redemptive sacrifice on the Cross, He gave us His
body and blood for our spiritual nourishment; He empowered His priests to
renew His sacrifice across the barriers of time and space, so we can be at
the foot of the Cross with His Virgin Mother in Holy Mass; He now dwells
with us in all the tabernacles of the world, eagerly awaiting our visit.
We might ask
ourselves: “Why would God do such things for mere sinful creatures like
ourselves?” Certainly, He owed us none of this—justice did not oblige Him
at all in our regard. And it wasn't contempt, and probably not even pity,
for such motives would probably have led Him to annihilate us. The only
motive that makes any sense is love. Love does such things. God did all of
these things for us because He loves us.
Now, we might go back
over our Lenten observance and ask ourselves how we might do a bit more for
God in return next year. We might put a little more effort and a little
more honesty into our fasting. And we might discipline ourselves to a bit
more spiritual reading. We might be a little more generous with the poor.
But, no matter how much more we do along these lines, the joy of the season
will still be one‑sided. The only thing we can do that will bring it more
into balance is to show God more of our love.
And people often have
trouble doing that. They say to themselves that “God is too abstract to
love very much, He is too far away; to distant.”
But, if that is true,
this Easter day is precisely the proper time to turn that feeling around.
For, if anything, during the past forty or fifty days Jesus has been as
close to us as it is possible for God to get to His creatures. In the
readings at Mass we have seen Him heal our blind and lame comrades; we have
seen Him multiply loaves to feed the crowds; we have accompanied Him on His
triumphal procession into Jerusalem; we have tasted His very body and
blood; we have seen Him lay down His life for our salvation. Our God is not
far away; He is not abstract or distant. He is right here with us! Indeed,
it is absolutely impossible to escape His divine presence!
Today is Easter
Sunday. “This is the day that the Lord hath made, let us be glad and
rejoice in it.”
Let us who have received God's love share it with each other and with those
who have not received it—for love is something that we cannot do in
isolation. Perhaps in this way, by loving each other, we will come to love
the God who left no good deed undone to show us His love.
Jesus Christ is truly
risen from the dead! Enjoy loving God as well as being loved by Him! Happy