Happy Easter! We just celebrated the Resurrection of Our Lord Jesus Christ yesterday and we start this Easter Season, where we continue the celebration of his Resurrection.1
We continue in the joy of the risen Lord. And our whole life is now lived in the light of the Resurrection. We have this great hope of knowing that God is with us. He is with us in the world and in our life. We are in his presence with every moment of our life.
And the readings of today’s Mass help us to be aware of that. Just in the first reading from the Acts of the Apostles, we heard how St. Peter said: “God raised this Jesus; of this we are all witnesses.”
We are, my brothers and sisters, witnesses of the Resurrection of the Lord Jesus Christ because we believe that and we know that Jesus is alive.
And the responsorial psalm helps us also during this challenging time to understand that Jesus is with us and he is victorious after the sad moment of his passion and crucifixion and then, as we celebrated yesterday, his glorious Resurrection: “Keep me safe, o God; you are my hope.”
Isn’t that a beautiful prayer that we can say today and every day during this Easter season.
And the passage of the Gospel from St. Matthew’s Gospel is one of the many beautiful things that we can consider during the beginning of this Easter season. I was thinking that it is especially important for us to reflect on the presence and company of Mary our Blessed Mother and the other women who were at the crucifixion.
And then St. John tells us in his Gospel: “And then, the women went to the Sepulcher on Easter morning.”
And it’s interesting because St. Mark says in his Gospel that these women had followed Jesus when he was in Galilee and ministered to him. He also says there were many other women who had come up with him to Jerusalem.
So when we think of an example that we need to follow, we can think of the apostles, we can think of so many people in our lives that help us to understand how important it is to follow Jesus and be faithful to him.
But if we want a simple, beautiful example, I think it is so important for us to reflect on the example of Mary our Blessed Mother and the holy women.
As we just read in the passage of the Gospel today that they were there. They were the first ones that knew about the Resurrection of our Lord Jesus Christ. And then, when the angel told them to go and tell the disciples, St. Matthew says that:
Jesus met them on their way and greeted them.
They approached, embraced his feet, and did him homage.
Then Jesus said to them: “Do not be afraid. Go tell my brothers to go to Galilee, and there they will see me.”
So two practical things that we can learn from this passage of the Gospel and the example of the holy women. First, that we have to be faithful to our Lord Jesus Christ. They were always close to Jesus, in the beautiful moments — in the exciting moments like his Resurrection — but also they were there for the crucifixion.
Beautiful example — following him and accompanying him in the good times and in the challenging times. And Jesus telling them: “Do not be afraid!” For us, personally, is a beautiful example.
So we have to ask ourselves: am I really close and faithful to Jesus?
We are. And it is a moment to have a new conversion as we celebrate the Resurrection of Jesus the beginning of this Easter season, we also can renew our commitment to be faithful to Jesus: Jesus, I trust you!
Then, as we heard, Jesus tells them: “Go tell my brothers to go to Galilee, and there they will see me.”
And that’s the second beautiful resolution that we can make today. To renew our commitment to be missionary disciples. To go out and tell people about the beauty of the Resurrection of our Lord Jesus Christ. We need to tell others that Jesus has risen from the dead and to share the beautiful hope that we have in him — just as the women in the passage of the Gospel today.
“Mary Magdalene and the other Mary went away quickly from the tomb, fearful yet overjoyed.”
So, my dear brothers and sisters, the resolution to be always close to Jesus and to be missionary disciples — to share our faith with the people around us, even in these challenging times.
So let us continue to accompany Mary our Blessed Mother in these joyful days of Easter. Let’s ask, especially, her intercession for all the doctors and nurses and all those who are providing essential services. And we ask her to bring hope to all who are suffering from the coronavirus.
1. Acts 2:14, 22-33; Mt. 28:8-15.