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2013-05-05 message

posted May 22, 2013, 2:35 PM by St. John's Webmaster

Christ is risen!” These few words with which we greet each other are our witness to the most important event in history. The resurrection of Christ changed both the material and the spiritual world. For the disciples of Christ, the resurrection was the assurance of their faith in Him as the Son of God. For all of humanity, it was the beginning of freedom from the tyranny of death.

“Christ is risen!” This is the foundation of our life as Christians. Because He is the firstfruit of theose who have fallen asleep, we have “a better promise” (cf. Heb. 8:6). It is this better promise, the expectation of the kingdom of God, that has sustained Christians in the faith over the last two thousand years. Looking forward to the kingdom, whose gates are open through the resurrection, the Church has remained steadfast in teaching and preaching the true faith and the true life that accompanies it through auspicious times and times of persecution.

Christ is risen!” These words bring the greatest joy because the trials and tribulations of this life have been overcome. Christ tells us, “be of good cheer for I have overcome the world.” In the resurrection the laws of nature do not apply. One who had died is alive never to die again. Christ thus teaches us “to be bold against [death] and to make it as nothing” (St. John Chrysostom – On the Epistle to the Hebrews).

“Christ is risen!” It is time to rejoice in the light of the Resurrection. Christ has broken asunder the bonds and we are free from the slavery of sin. We are free to ascend the paths of the spiritual ladder, to taste and see that the Lord is good, to become holy as God is holy.

And we respond with strength and conviction, “Truly, He is risen!” The witness of the disciples and the Church through the ages is true. The tomb is empty and the grave clothes have been left behind. Our Lord is the author of life and of our salvation. He is the way, the truth, and the life and this life has triumphed, once and for all, over death.

May our Lord guide our lives in faithfulness to him, holding in our hearts always the joy of the resurrection.

With love in Christ,
+Fr. Peter