by Fr. Bob HIlz, TOR
Acts 10:34a, 37-43; Ps 118:1-2, 16-17,22-23; Colossians 3:1-4; or 1 Corinthians 5:6b-8; John 20:1-9
+ A Happy and Blessed Easter to all of you and your families!
This coming week we celebrate the Resurrection and all the resurrection stories at Mass. So many books and movies have been produced about the suffering, death and resurrection of Jesus Christ, the savior of the human race. The whole Christian life moves toward Jesus on the cross and flows from his wounded side. Easter is our greatest feast and we celebrate it for eight days.
At the daily Masses this coming week we shall read little parts of the resurrection stories from our gospels. I think what is most helpful for our growth in faith is to take the time to sit down. Pray for the guidance of the Holy Spirit and read each of the resurrection accounts and take notes. Who saw Jesus on that Sunday? (What, where, when and how did they see him?) What did Jesus tell them? How was he different than before his death? I believe you will get caught up in the wonder of this glorious event. You will be astounded and excited about who Jesus is and what he is about in and through us. He wants to envelop us more and more in his loving light.
During the weekdays of this season we shall read from Acts of the Apostles, which is the history of the Church for about the first fifteen years. As Jesus filled me more with the sheer wonder of his resurrected presence, I wanted to know more. The Letter to the Hebrews had new meaning about Christ’s work. Then I was led to read more of the resurrection history in Vol 4 of Blessed Ann Catherine Emmerich’s book, "The Life of Jesus Christ and Biblical Revelations." As I read these stories I almost found myself there as if I was watching a movie. I want to be like Mary Magdalene seeing Jesus on Easter Sunday morning.
Now I often pray, wanting to be enveloped and transformed in his glorious light. He is the true light of the world as the I AM statements in St. John’s gospel tell us. They are like channels of God’s power filling us in various ways so we can radiate Christ’s love in the way we live our daily lives. We are his lights, filled with his living water and Eucharistic Bread. We are his lambs, held close to his heart, living his new life on our way to heaven and learning his truth. One day in heaven we shall have a new body like his glorified body. I can hardly wait. Try it; you’ll like it. You’ll get high and lifted up!
Next Sunday is Divine Mercy Sunday as Jesus asked of St. Faustina and St. John Paul II implemented. Jesus asked that we do a novena of prayers or Chaplets of Divine Mercy from Good Friday until next Sunday. If you haven’t started you could begin now, asking God to pour out more of his mercy, his love, on us, our country and the world. Mostly when I finish the nine days, I do it over and over all year long. We all know we desperately need more of Jesus’ love. Amen!
May our risen Jesus teach us much more about his wonderful plan to fill us with more of his love. Great Easter blessings on you and your families now and throughout the rest of your lives. And say a little prayer for me.
+ Fr. Bob Hilz, Loretto, PA
(© 2015 Fr. Bob Hilz, TOR)