“Then went in that other disciple which came first to the sepulcher: and he saw, and believed”.
Happy Easter! I join with all of you at this time of great Joy as we witness to the world the Glorious Resurrection of Our Lord. This singular event in history is what provides Christians around the globe the confidence to proclaim that great Miracle of God’s Victory over sin and death. By this singular event, we know that our Salvation, our guarantee of life Eternal, has been won. By this singular event, we have been made heirs to the Kingdom of God.
Perhaps the most appropriate visual analogy that I can offer occurred on Holy Saturday; during the Holy Saturday Liturgy and the first Mass of Easter. All was dark inside the Church. The images, statues and crosses were veiled as we witnessed the Blessing of the New Fire and the Paschal Candle. We heard the Paschal Proclamation sung and renewed the vows we made at our Baptism. Then, during the beginning of the Mass, as the first notes of the Gloria in excelsis were intoned, the lights came up, the veils were removed, and all in attendance gave voice to that great song of the Angels; “Glory be to God on high”!
It has been said that our Liturgy reflects our Faith. This is never more apparent than on Easter. A day that begins in darkness is transformed into light. The darkness of sin is broken by the Light of the world. The shadow of death is overwhelmed by the Light of Christ.
It is with this idea, this knowledge, this wonder of a people who have been brought out of darkness into the light, that we now proceed. We have been given a precious gift; the gift of the Gospel of Christ; the gift of the message of his Sacrifice for our sins; and the gift of his triumph over sin and death. And as we also know, it is ever more important that we share that message, that gift; so that others may likewise emerge from the darkness into the light; so that all may know the Love, the Compassion, the Sacrifice and the Glory of Our Lord.
In the coming months, we at St. James will have many opportunities to share this precious Gift. As we look forward to the great feasts of the Ascension of Our Lord, the coming of his Paraclyte, the Holy Ghost, and the Mystery of the Triune Godhead, let us urge our friends, our family, our brothers and sisters, to join us in the celebration of these Miracles. And at the same time, let us invite them to share in our love for the Blessed Mother of God, Our Lady of Walsingham, as we visit her shrine during our annual Pilgrimage in June.
It is through these invitations to others that we show our true understanding of the Miracle of Our Lord’s Resurrection; that our most earnest desire is to help bring them out of the darkness of this world and to join us in the Faith; to stand with us in that empty tomb and to believe; to join us as we bask in the Light of Christ.
I wish you all a Blessed and Holy Easter
Yours in Christ,
Daniel J. Jennings+