April 24, 2011 § 1 Comment
“We are an Easter people and Hallelujah is our song.” -Pope John Paul II
I wanted to share some words from the homily I heard on Good Friday and the one I heard at Easter mass this morning. They’re especially pertinent today as the wretchedness and sickness of the crucifixion is untwisted into the beauty and healing of the Resurrection.
Both are messages of Hope. But, isn’t that appropriate. Easter is about hope.
On Friday, Father John pointed out that Jesus was betrayed by a kiss. A symbol of love was twisted into a symbol of betrayal. When we venerate the cross as Catholics, we often kiss the cross as a symbol of our reverence and love. This kiss is an untwisting of what Judas twisted in his betrayal. And, at Communion, Jesus kisses us back.
Isn’t this beautiful? Not just in the everyday, “Jesus loves you” unoriginal way, but its a beautiful personalization of Jesus’s actions and our continuing love relationship with him.
Fr. John also reminded us that we should be a people of hope to those in despair. A people of light.
Today, the Deacon who gave the homily noted that Easter is nothing unless we remember the suffering to took to get there. The Easter message is one of hope.
He said that we need to embrace pain and suffering, but maintain hope. We have to die to ourselves, let ourselves suffer, and continue to be hopeful. This is what Easter is about. We must remember that there is a lesson and a beauty in pain, and by pushing it aside, or medicating it, without ever embracing it, we miss the lesson. This cycle of dying to self, of pain, and then rebirth to new life is meant to teach us hope, and this is exemplified in the Easter mystery.
So, do we embrace pain, but maintain hope? Do we let the pain be part of us, knowing that there is something to it, that new life awaits us? Or do we push it aside, medicate it, and learn nothing from our suffering?
I’m patiently, hopefully, waiting for new life this Easter.
Happy Easter to you and yours.