Glory and Joy of Easter

As many of you know I am a hospice chaplain. In my work I have the opportunity to meet with a wide variety of people with a wide variety of beliefs.

In 2014 I met a man who came to hospice because he was dying of cancer. He told me that he is Catholic and attended Catholic school as a child. When he graduated he participated in an annual ritual: the nuns who taught them predicted their profession. They told him he would be a writer. Alas, he didn't pursue writing but instead found his calling in the military and while he found his life fulfilling he couldn't shake the idea that he disappointed the good sisters by not writing. After he retired he wrote a series of book that he self published.

He asked me to publish his booklets on the internet after he died. He asked that I not name him and I'm honoring his wishes.

On Easter Sunday, the Savior of the world, Jesus Christ, resurrected from the dead, thereby sealing the authenticity of His Divinity.

To fully appreciate the magnificence of Easter we must review the significant events of Christmas, the ministry of Jesus Christ, and His crucifixion, for within lays the message of our salvation.

When we look back at Christmas, God could have chosen many ways for our Savior, Jesus Christ, to enter this world, but none would be more memorable for its message than the virgin birth of His Son in a stable. In choosing this humble beginning for His Son, God is clearly announcing that wealth and titles are insignificant in attaining our heavenly goal. To emphasize this, He states that it is easier for a camel to pass through the eye of a needle than it is for a rich man to enter into the kingdom of heaven. This is a strong condemnation for those who would make the accumulation of wealth their primary objective in life. Wealth acts like an opiate, the more we gain, the more we crave. We never sense when we lse our sensibilities. Wealth in itself does not mean we will reach a tragic end, but the manner in which we accumulate it can be condemning.

Qualities endearing in the eyes of God were exemplified throughout the ministry of Jesus Christ; foremost are forgiveness, compassion, and love.

God's forgiving nature is revealed in the parable of the Prodigal Son, and again when he forgives the adulteress and saves her from being stoned to death. Perhaps the most important act of forgiveness for us to remember is of the thief on the cross, for it tells us it is never too late to repent.

Practically every miracle Jesus Christ performed showed His compassion for man and his sufferings. The blind see, the deaf hear, the lame walk, the lepers are cleansed and the dead are brought back to life. We cannot perform miracles per se, but we can be charitable, in every manner, to the less fortunate.

The crucifixion of Jesus Christ on Good Friday was an enigma to His followers, casting doubt as to His divinity. How could God permit His Son to undergo such suffering? But in light of Easter Sunday, what was initially perceived as a tragedy, was actually the greatest act of live ever to be performed. A sinless Jesus Christ suffered crucifixion and death so we sinners would have the opportunity for eternal life. Who can question the extent of God's love? It is boundless.

The apostle's faith in Jesus Christ, prior to His glorious resurrection, was also stressed. It was only after a resurrected Christ appeared to the apostles that their faith was restored. When the Holy Spirit descended on them, the apostles understood, at that moment, that God did not send Jesus Christ to overwhelm the world with his power, but to show us that forgiveness, compassion and love are the qualities which will permit us to achieve our own resurrection. These qualities are imbedded in two distinct acts of love; love God above all and your neighbor as yourself. A message straight from God, clear and concise, requiring no great intellect or study to understand. Achievement guarantees our salvation.

So each Easter should be a day of great joy, remembering the glorious resurrection of our Savior, Jesus Christ; knowing the gates of Heaven and eternal life are open to all, and for all generations. Our spirits should be uplifted every time we recall the words a resurrected Christ spoke to his apostles in John 20:29, "You believe because you have seen, blessed are they who believe but have not seen." What an encouraging message to all who seek Him.


Dedicated to the Blessed Mother Mary and Her Sisters of the Immaculate Conception


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Glory and Joy of Easter

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Until I Come Again