AS WE CELEBRATE THE RESURRECTION OF OUR LORD ON THIS EASTER we recall as it has always been – from the angels, the first to welcome the believers into the fact of our Lord’s risen life; from the women who returned with the unbelievable news and, yet, the most longed-for and hoped-for of all news; from the divine lips of Christ Himself – our Lord’s followers begin and fill this day with exuberant joy in their hearts that the Lord is risen, the Lord is truly risen. This is my greeting to you as well. It is the greeting of those ordained to be Faithful, for what is the meaning of the lives of priests, deacons, sisters, brothers, but to live to tell the story of the Risen Christ, so that the hopes of all the Faithful may be renewed, from day to day, as the life of the Church unfolds. And it is the greeting of men and women of faith and love to one another. Think about it, folks – what can faithful love and loving faith do better than to proclaim with true peace and joy in our hearts that the Lord is risen, the Lord is truly risen. From our reading scripture we know that other greetings were heard that day and on the days that followed – “do not be amazed” … “ do not be afraid” … “peace be with you.” And greetings were to be given, not by words, but in signs – in the breaking of the bread, in the illumination of the Word, in a meal shared upon the shores of a lake, where humble fishermen awaited their Lord’s risen visitation. And greetings persist, even to this day, in a great hymn of the Church’s joy, as she turns to the world, and sings: “I know that my Redeemer lives! What joy the blest assurance gives! He lives, He lives, who once was dead. He lives, my everlasting head!” On this greatest day for all humanity, remembering this joy as it first came upon the Faithful, we embrace in our minds and hearts the light of Christ that has been enkindled, the fire of Christ’s love, and the day of His resurrection, in our hearts, our homes, in every place where we interact with one another, with true joy we proclaim: the Lord is risen, the Lord is truly risen. Choice Blessings to you and your families on this joyous Easter Sunday!
OF NOTE: Please join me in thanking everyone involved in preparing for Holy Week and Easter, beginning with those who answered the call to become fully-initiated members of the Catholic Church this Easter, along with their sponsors and our catechists. Thank you to all who cleaned, prepared and decorated our churches so beautifully for Holy Week and Easter. Thank you to our musicians, cantors and choir directors and members; to our lectors, altar servers, Extraordinary Ministers of Holy Communion, hospitality and ushers; to our Masters of Ceremony. Above all, thank you, God, for sending your Son, Jesus Christ, to teach and guide us, to suffer and die on the cross, only to rise on the third day opening up for us the opportunity to follow Him so that we may spend eternity with Him in Heaven.