Easter Sunday

Easter Sunday of the Resurrection of the Lord – 31 March 2024

LOVE CONQUERS ALL: The Resurrection

The death of a loved one is always an unspeakable loss. Suddenly, everything changes. The inevitable absence of a loved one tells a story of pain, tears, and emptiness. The grieving period can take years to accept the loss and to let go. One thing is sure, and that is, we will never see the loved one face to face alive again. Easter is different!

Mary of Magdala was in for a total surprise. Early, on the first day of the week, she runs to the tomb of Jesus. Her expectation of a ‘rendezvous with death’ turns to sorrow as she notices the stone has been rolled away. Her only conclusion is that the body of Jesus has been stolen. She cannot keep quiet. Peter and John had to be informed.

Now begins the first Easter morning jog! Three disciples on a race to witness the greatest act of the Father’s response to the Cross. Peter represents the icon of the ‘primacy of authority’, John the Beloved represents the icon of the ‘primacy of love’ and Mary of Magdala represents the icon of the ‘primacy of witness’. First things First – it is dark, the tomb is empty, and the burial clothes are well folded. But where is the body of Jesus? John the Beloved gets it first. He believes. Jesus is alive!

We celebrate Easter – the truth of the resurrection is God’s liberating love for Jesus his well-beloved Son. The Cross was not the end, the tomb was not his final resting place. The Resurrection is a strong reminder of the Father’s response to the violence, passion and Cross of Jesus. The Father had the final word and victory over death was the Father’s response to the Cross.

If the life, ministry, passion and death of Jesus is deeply rooted in history, then his resurrection is also deeply rooted in history. The witness of Mary of Magdala was not a hysterical invention. She is the first in a long chain of witnesses who proclaimed that Jesus was truly alive. The Roman Empire and the Jewish Temple authorities could do nothing to counter these witnesses. The prophecies of old and of Jesus himself are revealed on that Easter morning. He is the ‘grain of wheat’ come alive, the ‘temple destroyed’ and rebuilt in three days! He is the ‘sign’ greater than Jonah.  He is the ‘Resurrection and the Life’.

We too believe that God will extend that same graciousness to us all and that we too will participate in Jesus’ resurrection on the last day. Jesus extends the same home-coming invitation to all of us. Death has no more power over us. We are an ‘Easter’ people and ‘Alleluia’ is our song.

Fr Glenford Lowe

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