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Reflections

Wonder on that First Easter

Christ is Risen! Indeed He is Risen! Alleluia!

timthumbHappy Easter my friends. I pray that your Lenten journey has been fruitful and that God is rewarding you for your desire to grow closer to Him. I am aware from my own experience how even if we have a good Lent, Resurrection Sunday can often feel like a “normal” Sunday in our hectic lives. Of course there maybe just a bit more chocolate and a larger family dinner, but we do not take in the beauty of the Mass and all we proclaim. If you find yourself in this mode today, it might be helpful to pause and try to recapture that feeling of wonder and awe, that gift of the Holy Spirit that enables us to recognize God's Awesomeness.

When Mary Magdalene went to the tome that first Easter morning, she expected to find Jesus' lifeless body. We know the Gospel story informs us that the tomb was empty, and that Jesus was raised from the dead. This is the “crowning truth of our faith” (CCC 638). We state our believe in Christ's life, death and resurrection every time we pray the Apostles or Nicene Creed. However, after 2000 years removed from this miraculous event, we can loose the wonder and awe of God's love for us. That He loves us so much as to become man, in order to atone for our sins, dying a horrific death, in order to conquer death, and bring us to everlasting life.

I remember a few years ago, when I had the opportunity to make a pilgrimage to the Holy Land, that I expected to gain a new appreciation for Sacred Scripture as having the personal experience of walking where Jesus walked would help me visualize what we read in the Bible. What I did not expect was the feeling of wonder and awe that I had upon visiting Jesus' empty tomb. In leading up to the visit, I kept reflecting on, “Why do you seek the living among the dead? He is not here” (Lk 24: 5-6). Yet when I came out of the tomb I immediately went to the first person I knew and shared the Good News, as if I was sharing it for the first time. CHRIST IS TRULY RISEN!!

In trying to help you grasp a measure of that incredible experience, think about how you feel when you see a majestic sunrise that takes your breath away. We know the sun will come up in the East every morning, even on cloudy days. Yet the beauty of how the sun changes the sky's colors is awe-inspiring. Artists may try to capture it, but some how the rendition is missing something. Nothing can compare the the actual experience.

As we begin this Easter Season, and even travel beyond, I pray that you may experience the gift of wonder and awe as we celebrate Jesus' Resurrection, not just on Easter Sunday but every Sunday of your life.

May our Blessed Mother lead you ever closer to Jesus, so that you may always remember:

Christ is Risen! Indeed He is Risen! Alleluia!