Sicut Dixit, Alleluia!!!
Christ has Risen,
as He said He would, Alleluia!!!
An Easter Message from Archbishop Charles C. Thompson
My dear brothers and sisters in Christ,
The Scripture readings for the Easter season remind us that God is always with us, accompanying us (as Pope Francis says), as we make our way on a synodal journey to eternal life with our triune God. The road seems long and difficult at times. The effects of a two-year global health crisis, combined with unjust, violent aggression in Ukraine and in various regions of Africa and the Middle East, are deeply disturbing. We need the reassurance of God’s closeness to us now more than ever.
The early Church had similar problems. As Paul and Barnabas admonished the disciples in the Acts of the Apostles (14:22), “It is necessary for us to undergo many hardships to enter the kingdom of God.” Still, as missionary disciples of the risen Jesus, the first Christians were challenged, as we are today, to persevere in proclaiming the Good News, placing all our hope in the fact that the risen Lord walks with us every step of the way.
As Easter people, we Christians believe that the world as we know it now with all its pain and sorrow is passing away. In the world to come, there will be no more tears, no more suffering or anxiety, no more sin and evil. This is the “new Jerusalem,” the heavenly city that we long for with all our hearts. It is a totally new reality made possible by the Passion, Death and Resurrection of Jesus Christ. Unlike the old order that is passing away, the new world is characterized by fidelity to the Lord’s commandment: “Love one another. As I have loved you, so you also should love one another. This is how all will know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another” (Jn 13:34–35). If we love one another, God dwells with us, making us one with Him and with each other. And when God dwells with us, there is no more death or mourning, wailing or pain. There is peace and joy beyond measure! What a magnificent vision! What a positive, hope-filled way to understand our destiny as children of God the Father, as disciples of Jesus, and as pilgrims journeying to our heavenly home with the guidance of the Holy Spirit!
The warning given to us by Paul and Barnabas in Acts remains, however. It is necessary for us to undergo many hardships before we can enter our heavenly home. Fortunately, we are not alone. God dwells with us. He is not dead; He is risen. He is not far away from us; He is close. God is not indifferent to our loneliness and pain; He gives us all that we need—His grace—in order to love ourselves, love one another and love Him. This is the truth that sets us free: God is love and if we live in love, we live in God, full of hope and joy (cf. 1 Jn 4:16).
No one has promised us that our lives will be easy or free of pain and sorrow. Easter joy doesn’t wipe away all our tears, but it does assure us that sin and death do not have the last word. They have been overcome (once and for all) by our Lord’s triumph on the cross, and we have been assured of a better world to come, a new Heaven and a new Earth, which can be ours if only we can accept God’s grace and learn to live in his love.
This Easter season, let’s rejoice in the grand vision we have been given of the Heavenly Jerusalem, but let’s also accept graciously the hardships and disappointments that will inevitably come our way as we journey together in faith, hope and love. The Good News is that God dwells with us; he walks with us and shares with us his boundless love and mercy. +Charles C. Thompson, Archbishop of Indianapolis
Holy Family School will host May Crowing on Friday May 13 at the 8a School Mass
Holy Family, Watched over & Cared for by Mother Mary, Pray for us.
~ Fr Jeremy M. Gries