Dear Friends in Christ,
Christ, our Passover, has been sacrificed!
These ancient words are ever new as we sing and pray them in celebration of our Lord’s Easter triumph over sin and death.
The journey through Lent to Easter is a familiar one to all of us. We have all been this way before. The penitential season and the period of Easter exaltation have come and gone many times in our lives. Yet each year God can use this solemn time to touch us deeply and differently. This is because we are different each time we celebrate these mysteries. Christ’s love revealed in His passion, death and resurrection remains unchanging. Our lives have changed. Our willingness to accept and model His love varies.
These days are the feast of the triumph of Divine Love. Our God will not put up with sin and death. He alone will have the last word and that word is LIFE. Like the first disciples, we are told not to cling to the tomb. Jesus does not belong to the past. He is not among the dead. He is risen! This mystery took hold of our lives in Baptism. The waters of Baptism buried us with Christ, so that we might rise with Him to new life. Our initiation into Christ’s death and resurrection requires us to go forth, to move on, to engage the world as missionary disciples, to announce Christ and His victory.
Because Christ, our Passover, has been sacrificed and has been raised, the cross does not lead us to a dead end but to life without end. Through the Easter Mystery our God turns sadness to joy, guilt to innocence, hate to love, despair to hope, death to life. Wherever we find ourselves this Easter on our life’s journey, may Christ’s Paschal Mystery be our joy, hope and peace. May God, Father, Son and Holy Spirit, bless you abundantly throughout the Easter Season.
Christ is risen! Alleluia!
Bishop Ronald W. Gainer