Resurrexit sicut dixit, alleluia!  

Posted by Rob Boileau in , , , ,

This is the day the Lord has made, let us rejoice and be glad in it! Alleluia! What a glorious day today is! After five and a half weeks of Lent, we have journeyed with the Lord to the place of His death and burial, Mount Calvary. We have stood alongside his Blessed Mother Mary, Mary Magdalene, and John the beloved disciple and watched as He died on the cross, giving up His spirit to God the Father. We watched as Joseph of Arimathea, one of His disciples, laid Him in the tomb, and sealed it with a stone. After leaving this sacred ground feeling downcast and somber… we now arrive at the most triumphant victory ever to occur in all of human history! Jesus Christ has risen from the dead! By His death, He took upon our sins – yours and mine – and destroyed our death! By rising from the dead, He has restored our life! What an amazing act of love our God has shown to us, that by giving His life up for you and me, we might be able to share our life – our eternal life – with Him in heaven.

Last night, we processed into the Church amidst darkness and silence, declaring Christ to be our light. How true this is my friends, for Christ is the light of the world! By dying on the cross for us, he destroyed the darkness forever, and by rising on this Easter morning, He has shown to us that the light of life will never die, and has given us hope that we too will one day rise just as He has done. At the Holy Mass this morning, we will hear the words of the Preface, which is the prayer that comes immediately before the Eucharistic Prayer, and the consecration of ordinary bread and wine into the Body and Blood of Jesus Christ. In the Preface that the Church gives to us for this Easter day, we are urged to praise God our Father with greater joy than ever, because Christ became our paschal sacrifice. What exactly does this mean for us? To celebrate Passover – the Israelite’s freedom from slavery – the Jews during the time of Jesus sacrificed an unblemished lamb during the evening twilight for their Passover meal, and placed the blood of this lamb on the doorposts of their houses so that the angel of death would “pass over” their homes. By doing this, they could rest assured that they would be protected and safeguarded by God who had chosen them as His people. For us today, Christ became that very Lamb, the Lamb of God which we proclaim Him to be at each and every Mass before receiving Him in the most Holy Eucharist. How good it is for us to be in communion with the Church, and how blessed we are that Christ would offer Himself up to the Father for our sake, so that we can receive Him each and every week at the altar! This grace that has been given to us is our hope for salvation!

When the disciples began to lose their hope in Christ after His death, the Gospel tells us that very early on that first Easter morning, Mary Magdalene went to the tomb to find that the stone had been rolled away. She then ran to tell Peter and John what she had seen, and after arriving at the tomb, they began to believe again. So many times in our lives we can become discouraged in those things which have always been present to us – which we can sometimes take for granted. For example, walking into the subway station early in the morning to catch a train to work, only to find out that the subway is down and the trains will be delayed for at least another hour. Or writing an article on a computer for a newspaper or a class in school when all of a sudden the power goes out, and suddenly realizing that the work hadn’t been saved yet. My friends, despite these and many other times that we may become discouraged in our day-to-day lives, Christ wants to tell us on this Easter morning that we can safely place all of our hope in Him, for He is truly the one source upon which we can completely abandon ourselves to, and never, ever be disappointed. In giving ourselves over to Him in all the little things that we do each day, was can find our true happiness – our eternal happiness. The world promises us happiness in so many temporary things, such as a nice car, a comfortable house, a place down the shore on the beach, and numerous other examples that give us instant gratification. In a society that tells us we can only be happy if we have wealth, power, and prestige, how could we possibly know the true meaning of happiness if all of these luxuries are suddenly taken away from us? It is only in Christ that our true happiness can be found, for Saint Augustine tells us that, “Our hearts are restless until they rest in you, O Lord.” Christ has promised to raise us up with Him on the last day, and Saint Paul assures us of this when He says, “Think of what is above, not of what is on earth. For you have died, and your life is hidden with Christ in God. When Christ your life appears, then you too will appear with him in glory.”

The hope, fear, excitement, distress, and anxiety – just to name a few of the many emotions – that Mary Magdalene must have felt that first Easter morning when she arrived at the empty tomb, we all feel from time to time. The Lord Jesus Christ wants all of us to know that feeling this way sometimes is perfectly okay, and it is in these times in particular that we must go to Him in prayer. It is in these times in particular that He wants to remind us that we have been buried with Him in baptism, so that we may rise with Him to a new life. We are reminded of this when we renew our Baptismal Promises at Mass this morning, and must always, always be mindful of the risen Lord’s presence among us here on earth. He desires for us to come to Him even in the darkest, most hopeless times in our lives, because there is never a time where He is not with us, loving us unconditionally from all eternity.

By Christ’s resurrection, we now have a purpose for our lives. The sun rose this morning for us to begin a new day, so that we would be able to enjoy its beauty and delight in its wonders that it will bring to us. My friends, the Son has indeed risen, and promises that all who believe in Him will receive forgiveness of sins through His name. Each and every Sunday we have the privilege of coming together and celebrating the mystery of Christ’s passion, death, and resurrection. We have the privilege to receive Him in the Most Blessed Sacrament, so that he can renew us and strengthen us from week to week. May we always revel in wonder of God’s abounding love, who for us became man, suffered, died, and rose from the dead so that we would be able to spend eternal life with Him!