EASTER SUNDAY

April 20, 2014

Gospel: (John 20:1-9)

            On the first day of the week, Mary of Magdala came to the tomb early in the morning, while it was still dark, and saw the stone removed from the tomb.  So she ran and went to Simon Peter and to the other disciple whom Jesus loved, and told them, “They have taken the Lord from the tomb and we don’t know where they put him.”  So Peter and the other disciple went out and came to the tomb.  They both ran, but the other disciple ran faster than Peter ; he bent down and saw the burial cloths there…and he saw and believed.  For they did not yet understand the Scripture that he had to rise from the dead.

Reflection:

            Even on this most glorious of days, the gospel incorporates contradictions: Mary of Magdala arrives at an empty tomb, and sees that Jesus is gone and “we don’t know where they have put him” while the disciple whom Jesus loved enters the tomb and “saw and believed”; they “did not yet understand the Scripture.”  Our own Alleluias and Easter joy are perhaps filled with some of the same contradictions. It seems as though we, too, peer into the empty tombs of the ups and downs of our everyday lives and are challenged to see and believe.  But we are the disciples whom Jesus loves; and we surrender ourselves to the Easter mystery when we return love.  All we need to do is hand ourselves over into God’s hands.  Filled with God’s love, we are then able to love in return.  Alleluia! The tomb is empty; by our love we see and believe, and we are filled with new life. Alleluia! (Living Liturgy, p.112)

Vincentian Meditation:

            “We must develop the practice of making frequent acts of the desire to know God and ourselves.  This will lead us to make the repeated acts of love which we owe Him and to avoid anything that is displeasing to Him.  We must often abandon ourselves to Him, show Him our hearts filled with trust and gratitude; and try from time to time to whisper prayers to Him.”-St. Louise de Marillac- (Gibson and Kneaves, Praying with Louise, p.95)

Discussion: (Share your thoughts after a moment of silence)

          Is our prayer life filled with repeated acts of love  and abandonment to God? 

          How do we “see and believe” as we live our life today?

Closing Prayer:

          Risen Lord, through your triumph of the cross,

                        May our sufferings lead us to deeper union with you.

          Risen Lord, you brought faith and hope to your disciples,

                        May we abandon ourselves to you, in trust and gratitude.

            Risen Lord, your resurrection formed a community of believers,

                        Give us true love for one another.

            Risen Lord, you give God’s love poured out in our hearts,

                        Make us beloved disciples who “see and believe.”  Amen