2017 Easter Message - Fr. Gagne
The follower of Jesus is a person who carries within himself the death and resurrection of the one who was led as a lamb to the slaughter.
In a world that is filled with so much cruelty, personal illness, suffering and death, it is a challenge to look up from our tears and see Jesus, as did Mary in the garden.
Like the disciples on the road to Emmaus, we too are so overcome with grief and disappointment that we fail to recognize Jesus. It was only in the breaking of the bread that their eyes were opened.
It is so hard to bridge the gap, to cross over into the Easter mystery. We try to cross over, and some how end up back in Lent. It is easier to fall back into what we know, and see, and hear, and experience, and believe that’s all there is; as the disciples to Emmaus said to Jesus, “we were hoping that he would be the one who would set us free,” but alas it has all gone so terribly wrong.
If Lent is the time when we give up things, then maybe the Easter Season is a time when we look for the presence of Jesus in our lives. Like nature that is coming back to life, in what has been a cold bleak winter, we slowly see signs of life within us. Perhaps the reason we live and keep living are summed up in these words, taken from a devotional book, “The way of sorrows, if walked with Jesus, the Man of Sorrows, is a path kept sacred and secret for his nearest and dearest, those whose one desire is to do all for him, to sacrifice all for him, to count, as his servant St. Paul did, all things as loss so that they might gain Christ.”
In every Eucharist we are present to the mystery of death and dying, and rising. It is in the breaking of the bread that we too recognize Jesus, and believe that he lives, and that we live because of him. May Christ, that morning star now rising, that never sets, move us from merely attending Eucharist, to giving ourselves over to be transformed in Eucharist.
May the risen Jesus break open our graves of despair, roll back the rocks of revenge and bitterness, that the light of Resurrection may free our bodies and spirits to rise again and again and again. A blessed Easter Season to all of you.
Rev. Roger C. Gagne