The Easter Celebration of the Church can be seen as a celebration of a sudden explosion of Light and Love in a world that had been condemned to experience only evil and darkness, a depressed and depressing world which at best could only dream of a light but which never appeared. Easter is like the new “Big Bang,” the beginning of a New Creation (2 Cor 5,17), a Light that continues to expand and influence the world until the end of time.
The Lord Jesus conquered our sins by means of his sacrificial death on the cross and, by rising from the dead into his eternal glory, Jesus ignited a flame in every sincere believer’s heart, a flame of faith fuelled by the interior Gift of the Holy Spirit which the world of non-believers cannot extinguish (Rom 6,11). This is the Easter Proclamation of the Church for every generation until the end of time.
We are no longer helpless victims of our sins and evil. We are no longer condemned to the once self-defeating hope of seeking salvation from others who are themselves condemned in their sins and in need of salvation. Yes this was the tragedy – that we were all in sin and therefore unable to save ourselves from sin and from all the consequences of sin. We needed a Saviour. We needed Someone like us but the perfect Image of God, spotless, sinless, who loves as perfectly as only God can love. In other words we needed God’s own Eternal Son to save us (Rom 3,23-24). Easter celebrates this Saviour who came at last and brought us everlasting joy. Alleluia! The Lord Jesus Christ is risen from the dead and He is the one and only Saviour of all humanity who alone can conquer our sins and give us Eternal Life. Jesus Christ is and will be the only One who can do this for all generations yet to be born until the end of time (Acts 4,10).
We praise God and give thanks to God with a joy the world of unbelief cannot enjoy or understand because the Risen Lord Jesus has also given us Believers in his Catholic Church all the Sacramental means and Divine Teachings for us to experience our salvation (Acts 2,42). We are no longer condemned to die in our sins but now we can receive all the spiritual and sacramental help in the Holy Spirit and live and die as God’s redeemed people in His grace and ultimately to enjoy Eternal Life with Jesus in his glory . We are assured of all these blessings by Jesus Christ himself who promised to be with his Church until the end of time (Mat 28,20).
How privileged we are to have heard and responded to this Good News in our life time. What a wonderful blessing and message of hope for the whole world. Easter is the life –giving Message for all. It inspires us and renews our missionary purpose as well.
How can we who enjoy such blessings and be quiet or keep it to ourselves? That’s not possible. If we carry the light of Christ in our lives then people looking for direction and salvation will seek from us that same Light. Yes, Easter is like the new “Big Bang,” the beginning of a New Creation, a Light that continues to expand and influence the world until the end of time. Let’s embrace that Light of Christ even more than before. Let us remain in that Light until the end of time.
Bishop Joao Rodrigues