Today, we celebrate Easter and the transforming vision associated with it. Jesus, who was dead, is risen! Alleluia! Today, we celebrate our belief that in Jesus’ death and rising, each of us has been afforded a new and happy beginning. Because of Jesus, we have been called to live what Professor and Pastor Peter Gomes has described as “life on the other side”, i.e. life on the other side of Easter.
Rabbi Harold Kushner (“Who Needs God”, 2000) has affirmed that religion is not primarily a set of beliefs, a collection of prayers or a series of rituals. Religion is, first and foremost, a way of seeing. It can’t change the facts about the world we live in, but it can change the way we see those facts, and that in itself can often make a difference. How appropriate that Peter, in today’s first reading, begins his speech at the home of Cornelius with the words, “In truth, I begin to see that God shows no partiality” (Acts 10:34). Living life in Christ on the other side of the Easter event, Peter had also begun to see as Jesus did, not with shades or blinders of centuries old prejudices that had once separated Jews like Peter, from Gentiles like Cornelius, but with this very vision of God, who sees all with love and welcomes all without distinction.
The new-found vision enabled Peter to finally begin to see the universal intentions of God, to preach the good news at Cornelius’ home and afterward to welcome him and his household as baptized brothers and sisters in Christ.
When Christ died on the cross and rose again, the Cross transformed into a symbol of hope. Do we foresee any kind of transformation in ourselves?
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Jesus’ love for us invites us to give to others, especially those most in need. ShareLife agencies continue to support the most vulnerable in our community through services that are only possible through your kind and generous donations.
Please give at the parish using a ShareLife envelope, online through our parish website, or at sharelife.org/donate. A blessed Easter to you all!
Very early in the morning after the Sabbath, Mary Magdalene went to the tomb to anoint Jesus’ body with precious oils. The reward of this good and conscientious steward was to be among the first to know that Jesus had been raised from the dead! Alleluia