Our human life is marked by a lot of darkness. Although life is beautiful, we can easily feel that death is stronger, and that death has the last word. Easter Sunday proves once and for all that life is stronger than death, that the light is stronger than the darkness. Every Easter, the Church asks us to recommit ourselves to our baptismal promises, which is the promise to reject hatred and evil in order to live in love and do what is good.
Adam and Eve were offered a choice between Life and Death. They rejected God’s will and cut themselves off from life. But God didn’t give up on us. In another garden Jesus said, “Not my will but yours be done.” He showed that Love is stronger than death. Easter means God has given us another chance. We can “fake our death” by drowning our sins in the baptismal water. Christ is Risen!
The Easter Vigil recounts three of God’s great moments in history: creating the world, making a covenant with Abraham, and saving the people of Israel from slavery. Greater than all of these things was the life, death, and resurrection of Jesus, who saved us from sin and death. Baptism is how God saves us from sin and death and gives us a new life in Christ.
August 5, 2010, a cave-in at a Chilean mine left 33 miners trapped deep underground. Rescuers bored down to them from the surface, then sent an escape capsule with a rescuer inside. One by one they entered the capsule and were winched up out of the mine. All the men were saved.
Our world is like a collapsing mine. God sent Jesus to be our Rescuer. One by one we are loaded into the rescue capsule, which we call a casket, and we are lifted to the surface. Be not afraid!
Our school fire last year was a terrible tragedy, but the Holy Spirit was moving in that fire to bring something bright, new, and so much better. The Spirit continues to work in the Church to bring unity, to purify us, and to speak to us in every language. The Spirit also moves people to step forward to serve the people of God in special ways – Priests, Deacons, Lay Ministers. The Spirit is moving in their lives and ours. Come, Holy Spirit!
The Spirit works in the Church to show us what it means to be faithful to Jesus here and now. At Baptism we were made members of God’s covenant. We have to be faithful to Jesus. Peace comes from knowing “whose” we are: We belong to God, and God belongs to us. He will always be faithful to us. Will we remain faithful to Him?
Easter, 5th Sunday. The Bible tells the story of the romance between God and His people, from creation “in the beginning” to a New Creation and union with God Today Jesus teaches his apostles the secret to surviving the tribulations and remaining God’s Holy People: If we want to truly be His disciples, we must love one another as Christ has loved us. (29 Apr 2013)
Jesus comes looking for the one lost sheep who denied him. Three times Jesus asks, “Do you love me?” Now Peter knows that true love is to lay down his life for his Lord. Peter says Yes, and follows Jesus to his death. Jesus asks us the same question: “Do you love me?” Follow me.
While Thomas was busy doubting, Jesus was right there with him. The Lord who was dead but now lives forever and holds the keys of death and hell is with us all the time. His presence heals the sick, opens doors, and gives us Peace. Christ is Risen!
Read the full story at the Des Moines Register I recently encountered a beautiful story about a young husband and wife. She was raised a Hindu in India, and he was raised a Baptist in Iowa, and they entered the Catholic Church at the Easter Vigil. What was so powerful about the story was that it shows the power of …