MT. 28: 1-10 (Easter Vigil Mass)

Today we stand before the greatest mystery, the central mystery of our faith. After recalling his passion and death, now we listen with wonder at the angelic proclamation: “He is not here… He is risen!” Not once but twice, the angel assures the women – “Jesus is risen!” So, it is true and worthy of belief!

If we truly believe the Resurrection, how do we live this heart of our faith? First, by conquering our fears through our conviction that Our Lord is risen from the dead. We hear “Do not be afraid,” not once but twice, first from the angel and then from the Lord Jesus himself. As followers of the Light, do we not oftentimes find ourselves treading in the darkness of fear and uncertainty?

Fear strikes us in many ways: Worried about our health. Anxious about our future. Bothered by family. Horrified by evil spirits. Feeling abandoned and helpless. As people of the Resurrection faith, today the Lord reminds us that he has conquered everything we are afraid of. He has trampled the worst – sin and death. We can conquer our daily trials and tribulations in the powerful name of Jesus and in his mercy and love. So to live this Resurrection faith, we must fight our fear by our faith in the Resurrection of the Fearless Son of God!

Second, by waiting for Jesus in Galilee. The gospel says, again not once but twice, that Jesus will return to this place and reunite with his disciples there. Galilee was where Jesus started his ministry. Galilee was where he met his friends, his followers, and also his enemies. It was the place where people lived their ordinary lives. And Jesus now sanctifies Galilee with his Resurrection. He is risen in the place where find ourselves every day, where we work, study, and live with our neighbors.

Galilee is where we usually are! The Lord will meet us, walk with us, and empower us there! After the intense season of Lent and Holy Week, this Easter the Lord wants us to feel his presence, proclaim his love, and share his truth in the simple, ordinary, almost banal occasions and places and relationships of our lives. It is the presence of the Risen Christ that makes all these ordinary things extraordinarily wonderful for one who follows the Lord.

Today we proclaim the Resurrection. And starting today, let us gently remove our fears and let us joyfully and trustingly welcome the visit of Jesus where we are, in the ordinary rhythm of our lives. Every day will be a reason to say: Hallelujah!

ourparishpriest 2023