Readings and Reflections Today

April 1, 2018

Easter Sunday - The Resurrection of the Lord - The Mass of Easter Day

Reading 1 ACTS 10:34A, 37-43

Peter proceeded to speak and said:

“You know what has happened all over Judea,
beginning in Galilee after the baptism
that John preached,
how God anointed Jesus of Nazareth
with the Holy Spirit and power.
He went about doing good
and healing all those oppressed by the devil,
for God was with him.
We are witnesses of all that he did
both in the country of the Jews and in Jerusalem.
They put him to death by hanging him on a tree.
This man God raised on the third day and granted that he be visible,
not to all the people, but to us,
the witnesses chosen by God in advance,
who ate and drank with him after he rose from the dead.
He commissioned us to preach to the people
and testify that he is the one appointed by God
as judge of the living and the dead.
To him all the prophets bear witness,
that everyone who believes in him
will receive forgiveness of sins through his name.”
Responsorial Psalm PS 118:1-2, 16-17, 22-23.

R. (24) This is the day the Lord has made; let us rejoice and be glad.
or:
R. Alleluia.
Give thanks to the LORD, for he is good,
for his mercy endures forever.
Let the house of Israel say,
“His mercy endures forever.”
R. This is the day the Lord has made; let us rejoice and be glad.
or:
R. Alleluia.
“The right hand of the LORD has struck with power;
the right hand of the LORD is exalted.
I shall not die, but live,
and declare the works of the LORD.”
R. This is the day the Lord has made; let us rejoice and be glad.
or:
R. Alleluia.
The stone which the builders rejected
has become the cornerstone.
By the LORD has this been done;
it is wonderful in our eyes.
R. This is the day the Lord has made; let us rejoice and be glad.
or:
R. Alleluia.
Reading 2 COL 3:1-4

Brothers and sisters:
If then you were raised with Christ, seek what is above,
where Christ is seated at the right hand of God.
Think of what is above, not of what is on earth.
For you have died, and your life is hidden with Christ in God.
When Christ your life appears,
then you too will appear with him in glory.

 

 

I COR 5:6B-8

Brothers and sisters:
Do you not know that a little yeast leavens all the dough?
Clear out the old yeast,
so that you may become a fresh batch of dough,
inasmuch as you are unleavened.
For our paschal lamb, Christ, has been sacrificed.
Therefore, let us celebrate the feast,
not with the old yeast, the yeast of malice and wickedness,
but with the unleavened bread of sincerity and truth.

Sequence Victimae Paschali Laudes

Christians, to the Paschal Victim
Offer your thankful praises!
A Lamb the sheep redeems;
Christ, who only is sinless,
Reconciles sinners to the Father.
Death and life have contended in that combat stupendous:
The Prince of life, who died, reigns immortal.
Speak, Mary, declaring
What you saw, wayfaring.
“The tomb of Christ, who is living,
The glory of Jesus’ resurrection;
bright angels attesting,
The shroud and napkin resting.
Yes, Christ my hope is arisen;
to Galilee he goes before you.”
Christ indeed from death is risen, our new life obtaining.
Have mercy, victor King, ever reigning!

Amen. Alleluia.
Alleluia CF. 1 COR 5:7B-8A

R. Alleluia, alleluia.
Christ, our paschal lamb, has been sacrificed;
let us then feast with joy in the Lord.
R. Alleluia, alleluia.

Gospel JN 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.

Reflections Today

Resurrection and Love

Easter Sunday

April 1, 2018

John 20:1-10

… he saw and believed (Jn. 20:8)

Today is the Easter morn! Today is the day the Lord has risen! Today is the day death has been defeated! Today is the day of resurrection! Yet, how do we understand Jesus’ resurrection and our resurrection? What does it mean when we say that death has been conquered?

We all know that we are going to die. We just do not know when, where and how, but we are sure that death will come. We remain anxious and afraid of the reality of suffering and death. It seems that death has not been defeated? It is true that sometimes death can be a liberation. A pious lady in her fifties once told a priest that she prayed that the Lord would take her when she was still beautiful. Then, the priest remarked, “How come you are still here!”

The usual occasion preachers speak of resurrection is the funeral mass! The resurrection has become a kind of pain reliever for the bereaved families and relatives. We are assured that the death of our beloved ones is not the final destiny. There is the blissful afterlife waiting, and we shall join our Lord in the resurrection. Though our preachers speak the consoling truth, the way we preach it tends to reduce the eternal life as a permanent retirement place, and the resurrection as extremely remote reality. Another priest once admitted that he was not that handsome, and thus he planned that in the day of resurrection, he would quickly snatch the body of handsome American singer, Justin Bieber! The resurrection is only good for the dead, and it does not mean much for us the living. But, resurrection is really for all of us, here and now.

Going back to the first resurrection in the garden, no Gospel describes how the resurrection takes place. It simply cannot. Yet, there is an empty tomb, and Jesus’ body is missing. Peter is greatly puzzled. Mary Magdalene is weeping bitterly. Only one disciple understands. He is the disciple who loves dearly Jesus and whom Jesus loves. Despite death and emptiness, love endures. Through the eyes of love, the disciple is able to see the resurrection.

Love and its relation to the resurrection go back to the story of human creation in the book of Genesis. We are created in the image of God (Gen 1:26). If God is love (1 Jn 4:8), then we are made in the image of love. More than other creatures, we are designed with the ability to love and to receive love. Not only having the ability to love one another, our nature is even gifted with the ability to be loved by God and to love God. No other creation on earth is able to participate in this most beautiful love affair with the Lord. Unfortunately, sin destroys this love relationship with God and seriously damages our ability to love and be loved. The history of humankind turns to be the history of sins, suffering, and death. Husband and wife hurt each other, brothers kill each other, men exploit women, women sell their children, and men destroy nature. We need redemption.

Out of His immense love, God becomes man so that He may begin His work of redemption. This redemption culminates in Jesus’ resurrection. One of the greatest of resurrection is our ability to love God and to receive God’s love is restored. Thus, John the Beloved Disciple is able to see through the empty tomb and believe in the risen Lord. Just as the grace of resurrection heals John, so the same grace heal us and restore our ability to love God. In the midst of emptiness of life, we are empowered to see the risen Lord. Despite the absurdity of life, we are enabled to transform our sorrows and pains into the opportunity to love more and serve better. Despite pain and death, love endures.

Blessed Easter!

Happy Resurrection! 

Br. Valentinus Bayuhadi Ruseno, OP​

Photo by Harry Setianto, SJ

Mar. 31

"...HE SAW & BELIEVED. FOR THEY DID NOT YET UNDERSTAND THE SCRIPTURE..." (Jn. 20:1-9).

To biliv does not demand understanding esp. wen d object of faith, such as Jesus' resurrection, is a mystery. Put ur life in d hands of d God. Trust in His providence. Faith is surrendering, not understanding.

Mar. 29

"HE LOVED HIS OWN IN THE WORLD & HE LOVED THEM TO THE END" (Jn. 13:1-15).

Today, we remember d institution of Priesthood & d Holy Eucharist. There is no mass w/o a priest & there is no priesthood w/o d sacrifice of d mass. Love d priests & d mass. They are expressions of Jesus' love that lasts.

Mar. 27

"ONE OF YOU WILL BETRAY ME'" (Jn. 13:21-33,36-38).

There ar many faces & degrees of betrayal & denial. D closer d relationshp, d deeper d pain & hurts are felt between and/or among d parties involved. Mov on wen u ar betrayed. But mke sure u dnt betray. D world has more than enaf "Judas"

Reflections by:
Fr. Ramon T. Salibay, O.P.

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