Easter Wednesday

Readings: Acts 3:1–10; Psalm 105:1–9; Luke 24:13–35.

The disciples on the road to Emmaus in today’s Gospel remind us that when the events of life just don’t seem to connect, or they don’t turn out as we expect, we need to listen more closely not only to what Our Lord is trying to tell us through situations and circumstance, but also what he has been trying to tell us all along. The disciples expected a type of savior and salvation that they didn’t get, and they couldn’t connect the dots on their own to understand what Jesus had been trying to teach them all along.

Jesus is the Word who connects all the dots in Sacred Scripture. He showed the disciples today how Sacred Scripture pointed to him, to what he must undergo, and to what would happen as a result. He wants to shed light on our lives through meditating on his words. If you’re having a hard time connecting the dots and understanding life, seek out Jesus in Sacred Scripture and he will help you to understand. Listen to him more closely and ask him to explain whatever you don’t understand about life. He always has an answer.

Easter Tuesday

Readings: Acts 2:36–41; Psalm 33:4–5, 18–20, 22; John 20:11–18

In today’s Gospel we recall that agonizing moment for Mary Magdalene between discovering the empty tomb and meeting the Risen Lord. Mary had been brave and all she wanted was to show one last kindness to Our Lord before saying goodbye. It seems even that is denied to her as she discovers the tomb empty and no one knows where Jesus has been taken. She tells Peter and John and they look inside and return home speechless. After all these days of suffering her bravery is spent and she breaks down in tears. Angels appear to her and she only wants to know where Jesus has been taken so that she can get him back. Jesus himself doesn’t identify himself to her at first and she only wants to know where Jesus has been taken.

What an explosion of joy when Jesus calls her by name and she realizes that he is not dead and gone, but alive and well. Her dedication and devotion are rewarded beyond her wildest dreams: someone beloved and gone is present and alive. The Risen Lord teaches us today that no darkness or despair can stand the test of time in the light of his Resurrection. No matter how difficult or impossible a situation may seem, it will be overcome if we face it with love and hope.

Easter Monday

Readings: Acts 2:14, 22–33; Psalm 16:1–2a, 5, 7–11; Matthew 28:8–15

Nobody likes a cover-up, because usually something bad that needs to be addressed is being covered up. In today’s Gospel something even worse is happening: something good is being covered up.

In some cultures Easter Monday is a holiday to recover from all the Easter festivities and on Tuesday everything is done. Spring Break in other cultures is the focus and is either ending or ended. Celebrating the solemnity of Easter has just begun: it lasts eight days, and then we continue into a whole Easter season.

Let’s not stop being witnesses to the Risen Christ. Let’s not be part of the cover-up. Let’s keep spreading the joy of the Risen Lord to everyone we meet.

Easter Sunday, Mass During the Day

Readings: Acts 10:34a, 37–43; Psalm 118:24; Psalm 118:1–2, 16–17, 22–23; Colossians 3:1–4; 1 Corinthians 5:7b–8a; John 20:1–9

The readings for Easter Sunday teach us that the Risen Christ reveals himself to those who believe in him. In the First Reading St. Peter reminds us of this when he says that only those who believed in him were then blessed by meeting and eating and drinking with the Risen Lord. He reminds us that “everyone who believes in him will receive forgiveness of sins through his name”: on the day of our Baptism we had an encounter with the Risen Lord that transformed us into children pleasing to Our Heavenly Father, and he continues to reveal himself to those who believe in him. An encounter with the Risen Christ in faith is always a salvific and transforming experience.

As St. Paul reminds us in the Second Reading, an outlook of faith keeps our eyes fixed on the things of above, where we know the Risen Christ stands at the right hand of His Father and intercedes for us. Like John in today’s Gospel let’s look at the signs of Jesus’ resurrection–an empty tomb, a suspiciously well-folded head wrapping–and simply believe. Our Lord will reveal himself to us and transform us in this Easter season and beyond.

Easter Vigil

Readings: Mark 16:1–7

The disciples thought they were doing one last kindness for Our Lord, and were trying to overcome an obstacle that seemed insurmountable: the stone sealing the tomb. That didn’t stop them from moving forward. In the end the obstacle was removed without them having to lift a finger, and their life took an unexpected turn: instead of one last gesture of kindness and closure for a departed friend, they received a wonderful surprise: their friend was alive and well. They also received a new mission: they had to spread the news.

In the light of Christ’s victory over death we know that if we continue along the path he’s shown us (love for him and for others), even when there are obstacles, even when we don’t understand, those obstacles will be overcome and those mysteries will be explained, because Christ overcame the biggest obstacle and mystery of all: sin and death.

Let’s follow the angel’s advice and share with everyone during this Easter season that Christ has risen and no obstacle or mystery can withstand his light and life. Let’s continue along the path he’s shown us knowing that following Christ is a path with obstacles and unknowns, but also with wonderful surprises from here to eternity.