18 Apr EASTER SUNDAY OF THE RESURRECTION OF THE LORD
Dear OLPH Family and Friends,
CHRIST IS RISEN! HE IS RISEN INDEED! This ancient form of Easter Greeting says very simply what it is we believe and why we are so excited. As St. Paul says, If Christ is not raised then our faith is in vain. The word resurrection does not mean a restoration to one’s previous life as happened to Lazarus, the widow of Nain, and Jairus’ daughter. It is not resuscitation. It is something infinitely more. It is a quantum leap forward into a totally new life.
The body of Jesus that rose on Easter Sunday was radically different from the body that was buried on Good Friday. St. Paul compares a body before and after resurrection to a seed and the plant that emerges from it. He says: “When the body is buried, it is mortal; when raised, it will be immortal. When buried, it is ugly and weak; when raised, it will be beautiful and strong. When buried, it is a physical body; when raised, it will be a spiritual body.” (1 Cor 15-44)
Happily, Easter tells us that the personal transformation of life that took place in Jesus is not something that is reserved for Jesus alone. It is something that will take place in each of us. We, too, are destined for resurrection. We, too, are destined to share in the incredibly transformed life that Jesus now enjoys in heaven.
As we study the Easter accounts in Scripture, we see not only that Jesus was remarkable transformed on Easter, but also that His disciples were transformed. Easter transformed them from a band of frightened, despairing people into a united group of daring missionaries. At the command of Jesus they set out to carry the message of Easter to the four corners of the earth. Despair began to give way to hope; darkness began to give way to light; hatred began to give way to love and sorrow began to give way to joy.
Everywhere the disciples preached the power of Easter began to work miracles in people’s lives. Those miracles haven’t stopped yet. They continue to happen in our time. This is the good news of Easter and every Sunday. We are destined to be transformed someday, just as Jesus was. Jesus wishes to transform us just as He transformed the lives of His disciples. Every Good Friday in our lives can be turned into an Easter Sunday if we but open our hearts to the risen power of the risen Jesus. We don’t have to wait until we die to share in the risen life of Jesus. We can begin right now, in this Mass, in this Easter celebration. The risen Jesus is in our midst right now, in the Church, inviting us to a new life of faith, hope, and love.
May this Easter be the beginning of a renewed life of faith, hope and love! ALLELUIA!