Today, we celebrate the most important day for Catholicism, and, in fact, for all of humanity...the Resurrection of Jesus Christ. It is on Easter where all of the preaching of Jesus, all of his teaching, all of his miracles actually find their meaning. Because without the resurrection, our faith is merely an idea with a positive message. Without the resurrection, nothing has changed for humanity.
St. Paul writes, “If Christ has not been raised, then our preaching is in vain and your faith is in vain. We are even found to be misrepresenting God, because we testified of God that he raised Christ.” (1 Cor 15:14-15). Without the resurrection of Jesus Christ, his preaching is merely an early version of a TED talk that inspires a nice idea that is repeated, but nothing has substantially changed in the life of each human being. If Jesus is not raised from the dead, then I cannot have a relationship with him...but that is the beauty of this day, because in fact, Jesus Christ is risen!
When Jesus rose from the dead, he was not merely resuscitated, but is alive in a whole new way. He is alive in the fullness of living. The great theologian Romano Guardini wrote, “Christ rose again; therefore resurrection is possible, and his Resurrection is the foundation of the true world.” (Guardini, The Lord). It is a living that is not encumbered by death, nor affected by sin. It is a living in the fullness of the love that is alive in every sense of the word: physically, psychologically, socially, and spiritually. This is the great victory!
And as if that is not enough, by his resurrection, Jesus Christ not only accomplished his own victory over death, but also offers to all people the same hope in the fullness of life. It is now, on this day, where we celebrate and open our hearts to receive his love into our lives all the more. Through the gift of the sacrament of baptism, we were all “buried” with Christ and rise with him. So that by his resurrection, we now have the real hope of that same resurrection to the fullness of life in the true world. We are invited to experience and live in the life-giving love of the Trinity; Father, Son and Holy Spirit. We are beloved children of God as well.
So this day, let us rejoice with all the Saints in heaven that Jesus Christ is fully alive and let us rejoice because he is the way, the truth and the life for us today and every day.
Fr Nathan LaLiberte