READINGS for 2009-04-12
The Resurrection of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ
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. – John 20:1
The Resurrection story starts with an inspiring act of a faithful woman who, in spite of the hopelessness of the situation, chose to act in love. She chose to honor the person who had forgiven her sins and given her dignity. She must have thought, “The Master’s grave must be in order. He deserves that!” So while the other disciples were sleeping (or hiding), this once condemned woman walks quietly and bravely, not knowing that the Savior was going to reward her for this heroism.
Jesus is our Hero! Today, we celebrate our salvation through His heroic act on the cross and His conquest of the enemy by His Resurrection. And yet we are all called to follow Him by being heroes ourselves, not so much with earth-shaking acts, but by doing His will in every situation of our lives.
Getting out of our way to give to a needy person, preparing food for your spouse even when unappreciated, refusing to slander an officemate, persevering in prayer for others even when they don’t care about us — this “Marylike” heroism pleases the Lord who anoints these acts so that the world would experience the power of the resurrection.Ariel Driz
How have you disposed yourself to the healing power of God?
Lord, only Your love heals. Reveal to me my sicknesses, especially those that most need your healing. Heal me, my Lord.
When Peter proclaims the Gospel to Cornelius’ household, he explains to them the events surrounding the death and resurrection of Jesus and their significance. The same is true for us today. We need to meditate on these events regularly in order to understand better what they mean for us — how they can transform our lives if we place our trust and hope in Him who has been raised from the dead.
Acts 10:34a. 37-43
34 Peter proceeded to speak and said, 37 “You know what has happened all over Judea, beginning in Galilee after the baptism that John preached, 38 how God anointed Jesus of Nazareth with the holy Spirit and power. He went about doing good and healing all those oppressed by the devil, for God was with him. 39 We are witnesses of all that he did both in the country of the Jews and in Jerusalem. They put him to death by hanging him on a tree. 40 This man God raised on the third day and granted that he be visible, 41 not to all the people, but to us, the witnesses chosen by God in advance, who ate and drank with him after he rose from the dead. 42 He commissioned us to preach to the people and testify that he is the one appointed by God as judge of the living and the dead. 43 To him all the prophets bear witness, that everyone who believes in him will receive forgiveness of sins through his name.”
P S A L M
Psalm 118:1-2. 16-17. 22-23
R: This is the day the Lord has made; let us rejoice and be glad.
1 Give thanks to the LORD, for he is good, for his mercy endures forever. 2 Let the house of Israel say, “His mercy endures forever.” (R) 16 “The right hand of the LORD is exalted; the right hand of the LORD has struck with power.” 17 I shall not die, but live, and declare the works of the LORD. (R) 22 The stone which the builders rejected has become the cornerstone. 23 By the LORD has this been done; it is wonderful in our eyes.” (R)
One of the great themes of Paul’s Epistles is found in the idea of ‘living in Christ.’ What does this really mean? Well, it would take a lot more space than we have here to explain that idea. Probably the best explanation I can give is to recommend to you the lives of the saints. Let us take the time and effort to buy some books on the lives of the saints and then read through them meditatively to understand how they saw the life of discipleship.
Colossians 3:1-4 (or 1 Corinthians 5:6b-8)
1 Brothers and sisters: If then you were raised with Christ, seek what is above, where Christ is seated at the right hand of God. 2 Think of what is above, not of what is on earth. 3 For you have died, and your life is hidden with Christ in God. 4 When Christ your life appears, then you too will appear with him in glory.
G O S P E L
The empty tomb — what greater evidence do we need for the resurrection? It is hardly possible that anyone could have come and taken the body out of the tomb during the night as the only candidates for this sort of an act would be the apostles. But I am sure they were too depressed to have sat down and organized the whole story of the resurrection and implemented it in such a short period of time. I cannot prove this. However, I believe the burden of proof rests with those who deny the resurrection as the greater amount of evidence available suggests that Jesus was indeed raised from the dead.
1 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. 2 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.” 3 So Peter and the other disciple went out and came to the tomb. 4 They both ran, but the other disciple ran faster than Peter and arrived at the tomb first; 5 he bent down and saw the burial cloths there, but did not go in. 6 When Simon Peter arrived after him, he went into the tomb and saw the burial cloths there, 7 and the cloth that had covered his head, not with the burial cloths but rolled up in a separate
place. 8 Then the other disciple also went in, the one who had arrived at the tomb first, and he saw and believed. 9 For they did not yet understand the scripture that he had to rise from the dead.
think:The empty tomb — what greater evidence do we need for the resurrection?
God’s special verse/thought for me today________________
T O D A Y ’ S BLESSING LIST
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READ THE BIBLE IN ONE YEAR Exodus 13-14
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THANK YOU LIST
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the enD oF the story counts
Two days ago we heard the tragic story of the suffering and death of Jesus. It was a sad story — a tragedy. It was the story of an apparent failure. All we were hoping for had come to an end, and like the two disciples on their way to Emmaus, we felt discouraged. But what we heard two days ago was not the whole story. The end was missing. And in a good story it is the end that counts. Today we hear and celebrate the end of the story. Today we can again sing “Halleluiah” that we have not sung throughout Lent. So, why do we rejoice today? What has the end of the story to do with it? We rejoice because listening to the end of the story, we come to know that our faith in Christ has been vindicated, that truth has triumphed over falsehood, justice over injustice and that tragedy has turned into happy ending. No, death and failure was not the end of the story. There was one more chapter and this is the most important chapter. In this last chapter of the story of Jesus we see Him rise from the dead in glory. He is vindicated. His enemies are shamed and confused. Jesus regains His eternal glory withthe Father. For us, His struggling followers, this is good news. Today, we come to know that truth is immortal. And that is good to know. People can and will always try to suppress truth, accuse truth of being a lie, condemn it, torture it, kill it, bury it in the grave. But on the third day, Truth has risen and will always rise in the end. This encourages us to never give up on truth. True will always be true. Just will always be just. Right will always be right even when the world around us would have it otherwise. It is the end of the story that counts. That is why the Church asks us today to rejoice and be glad. Even when we are going through very difficult times, even when the enemy seems to be winning the battle in our lives — this is never the end of our story. Today, Christ has won. And we know that in Christ we shall overcome. Halleluiah, Praise the Lord! Fr. Rudy Horst, SVD
Is the Resurrection of Christ just another feast day on the calendar or do I draw strength from it when problems and suffering begin to overwhelm me?
Lord, I thank You for the Good News of Your glorious resurrection. It gives me joy, courage and hope. You have defeated evil and death and You will defeat it for me as long as I cling to You and follow You loyally. Amen.
St. Zeno of Verona, Bishop, pray for us.
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