Witness the Risen Christ
After the end of World War II, American soldiers raiding a concentration camp came across a diary of a Catholic prisoner which read, “Lord, yesterday I was meditating on your Joyful mysteries – my good family, lovely children and caring friends, secure job. Today, in this dark dungeon, I am meditating on your Sorrowful mysteries – in hunger, brokenness and complete separation from my near and dear ones; but my Lord I firmly believe that after every Joyful and Sorrowful mystery there lies a Glorious mystery – I firmly believe and hope that after sharing in your cross, I will also share in your Resurrection.”
Our life is built on hope, and the greatest Christian hope is the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. As St Paul beautifully expresses in his Letter to the Romans, “The entire creation eagerly awaits the coming of Jesus”. This idea is echoed in the Gospel narrations of the Resurrection event. Jesus’ post-Resurrection appearances, his walking with them on the road to Emmaus, his breaking of bread with them, all point to the truth that Jesus did return as he had promised.
On the road to Emmaus Jesus accompanies his disillusioned disciples, listening to their disappointments. He speaks to them explaining scripture, and later, in their midst, breaks bread at the table; it is then, scriptures testify, “that their eyes were opened and they recognised him”. Jesus had returned! Such was the impact that they immediately got up and returned to Jerusalem to witness boldly.
Jesus’ presence continues to be with us today in the Holy Eucharist, where he is fully present – body, blood, soul and divinity! Its effect, therefore, must be no different than what the disciples experienced at Emmaus. What does the Eucharist mean to you? Do you believe it is the real presence of Jesus? If yes, then it must transform you!
Today we live in a virtual world. Relationships have been reduced to WhatsApp messaging. When was the last time you sat and spoke with your spouse, children or parents? What is it that drives you in life – your family and friends, or your work obsessions? All the facilities and modern gadgets cannot replace the love and concern of a parent. Regular family prayer and sharing brings Christ into the family equation, thus making us an Easter people announcing the hope, peace and joy of the Risen Lord. This message must rise beyond our family and seep into our neighbourhoods. It must convince us to stand up against injustice and oppression; to reach out to the marginalised and exploited. And also protect our environment. These and many more ways, as inspired by the Lord, will help us live the Eucharist and emanate the presence of the Risen Lord.
Last, but not the least, we ought to live out the Eucharist in our own parish community. Vatican II constantly stressed the role of the laity, wherein the laity is called to exercise their baptismal office of Priest, Prophet and King. But barely 10% involve themselves in parish activities. This Easter, resolve to be a part of at least one activity/association. Let us strive to forge stronger SCCs and Youth groups. May we be guided with a spirit of forgiveness and equal opportunity for all. Thus as one Christian family, may we all effectively witness our Risen Christ.
- Br Jordan Govind
Date : 16th April 2022