Gospel – John 20:1-9
On the first day of the week,
Mary of Magdala came to the tomb early in the morning,
while it was still dark,
and saw the stone removed from the tomb.
So she ran and went to Simon Peter
and to the other disciple whom Jesus loved, and told them,
“They have taken the Lord from the tomb,
and we don’t know where they put him.”
So Peter and the other disciple went out and came to the tomb.
They both ran, but the other disciple ran faster than Peter
and arrived at the tomb first;
he bent down and saw the burial cloths there, but did not go in.
When Simon Peter arrived after him,
he went into the tomb and saw the burial cloths there,
and the cloth that had covered his head,
not with the burial cloths but rolled up in a separate place.
Then the other disciple also went in,
the one who had arrived at the tomb first,
and he saw and believed.
For they did not yet understand the Scripture
that he had to rise from the dead.
Reflection on Sunday Gospel
Let us remember we are in the holy presence of God…
It was still dark, but Jesus was not there at the tomb. Jesus was an early riser because he had to begin the work of the resurrection—the work of bringing life to that which was dead. The large stone had been dislodged from the entry way of the cave because the power of evil was rendered useless by the power of good. The burial cloths were strewn around the tomb because Jesus left behind the linens of death, shaking off the dust of the dead, and emerging forth in the Spirit of new life.
This is the work of resurrection: in the darkness of night, when hurt and betrayal and sickness plague us, Jesus breaks loose and allows life to light up those darkened places in our lives; in the darkness of night, when we feel we have lost our way and our lives are dry, our hearts are burdened, our prayers are troubled, Jesus rolls away the stone and allows light to enter and illumine us; in the darkness of night, when our lives seem colorless and dreary, when our institutional church and faith communities seem distant and cold, when those who were once close to us seem far away, when we find ourselves alone, forgotten and afraid, Jesus emerges from the wintery cold of death and welcomes us home into the warmth of Spring.
As with the disciples who arrive at the tomb, we see and we believe, but we do not yet understand. However, for now it is enough for us to say with our Founder, Saint John Baptist de La Salle, in his Meditation for Easter Sunday: let us “rejoice with the whole Church over so great a favor, and thank Jesus Christ our Lord very humbly for it… [Let us] show by our conduct that the resurrection of Jesus Christ has produced these happy effects in [us]!”
“Say alleluia always, no matter the time of day, no matter the season of life.”
Benedict of Nursia
St. John Baptist de La Salle … Pray for Us!
Live Jesus in our Hearts … Forever!
Brother Frederick Mueller, FSC