Today's Scriptural Meditation Readings:
March 23, A.D. 2008
Scripture from today's Liturgy of the Word:
Acts 10:34a, 37-43
Psalm 118:1-2, 16-17, 22-23
A reflection on today's Scripture:
Easter has come suddenly, with a burst of light!
Now we know that Jesus stands by his promises! In a flash, Christ has changed darkness and death into light and life. Our journey through the struggles of Lent and the pain of Holy Week is over. With malicious sacrilege, evil has done its worst to the sacred body of God's Son. With Mary and John, we saw Him die. We wept at the tomb. Then, before dawn on Sunday, Christ broke through the rock, shattered the power of sin and, according to tradition, appeared first to His Mother, then to the women and the apostles.
As we listen to today's first reading, we hear one of Peter's very first sermons. The curious bystanders were astounded at the change in this man. He comes fresh from the fiery tongues of Pentecost, still in shock at the dream he had on the way to Cornelius' house. Nothing was to be considered unclean. So he is free to preach to Gentiles the Good News of God's forgiveness and freedom for all. Peter and the others are commanded to baptize any who believe in the Christ. So the word spreads through the whole countryside and beyond. Resurrection is the hope of every living person. No wonder the apostles preached with such courage and enthusiasm!
They preached about a God who cared first for people who were poor and powerless, a God whose love governed all His relationships. And He taught us to not only believe in justice, but to act justly.
The Scripture readings during these fifty days between Easter and Pentecost are among the most exciting in the Church year. We burst into "Alleluias" over and over, and joyfully shout "Christ has Risen" this Sunday. But more than just singing, we settle into a new time of reflection on our own program for resurrection in these very troubled times. After all, it is our mission to bring new life to a troubled world. If we don't do it, who will? So let's repack for travel!
As followers of the Risen Christ, the time has come for greater efforts on our part to influence politicians and others on all the vital life issues that are integral to the teaching of Jesus Christ—from abortion and embryonic stem-cell research to corruption in government and all institutions—to proper medical care for the sick and elderly. Jesus teaches respect for every human person, whether alien or citizen. We need to study the document of the Bishops on Faithful Citizenship. Hopefully, many of us will continue our Why Catholic groups. Faith and action begin with understanding and loving the teachings and plans for action of our Church. We have so much to do as hope-filled Easter Catholics. These are critical times, and we must not fall back into laziness or complacency now that Lent has ended.
Let's hope our spiritual blood-pressure is just a bit higher as we proclaim the Good News.
Christ is Risen, Alleluia!
- Msgr. Paul Whitmore |
Easter Sunday: The Resurrection of the Lord
Lives of the saints:
Full Scripture text from today's Liturgy of the Word:
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