A Reflection for Easter Sunday
By Sr. Onellys Villegas, MHSH
Readings: Easter Sunday Readings
Today’s Gospel tells us that on the first day of the week, Mary of Magdala came to the tomb early in the morning. Mary saw that the stone had been removed from the tomb. So she ran and went to Simon Peter and to the other disciple whom Jesus loved, and told them. They ran to the tomb and saw the burial cloths there. They all saw and believed. For they did not yet understand the scripture that he had to rise from the dead.
All of the readings for Easter are so rich and full of meaning. We need to pause for a moment and to wonder at the marvel of the news. Jesus fulfilled his promise, rose from the dead, but, more than that, he rose to stay with us.
We meet Jesus along the way of our daily lives. We meet Jesus in the dark times and in the light. We meet Jesus in our quiet moments. Jesus came to us as a companion with only one purpose: to teach us how to love as he loved, quietly, carefully, tenderly and with great forgiveness.
Love vanquished death… love is our strength for those of our brothers and sisters who here too have suffered prejudice and indignities, mistreatments and persecutions. But while all of these pass away, LOVE REMAINS!
LET US BE A WITNESS OF HIS LOVE!
By Sr. Princess Mary Dawson, MHSH
The call is the motivating force that beckons us forward, no matter the doubts and fears. We are called to keep moving with the forces of the times as they change around us. We must trust that we are being led and are being called to lead. We must not give into our fears or false beliefs about who and what we are or what we can or cannot do. There is a force within us that guides and protects us no matter the unjust systems we confront in life.
We have been called from the beginning of time to be the birthing force of change in our world. We must not let apathy pin us to our seats but move onward, trusting even when the path forward isn’t clear.
The history of so many people who believed in Christ is full of accounts of humanity being moved to change. These peoples followed the guidance and prompting of God and courageously risked their very lives to see changes in vast systems of belief.
We are women who are meant to be unconstrained by the belief systems passed down by others. Instead, we must stand tall as we walk like Christ into a sinful world seeking, like Christ, transformation for all God’s peoples.
Day 7: Changed by the Good Shepherd.
1 Samuel 2:1-10, Not by might does one prevail.
Psalm 23, You are there with your rod and your staff.
Ephesians 6:10-20, Be strong in the Lord.
John 21:15-19, Feed my sheep.
Hannah’s realized that some things happen only with the help of God. It was through His will that Hannah and her husband became parents. In what would seem to be a hopeless situation this text is an example of victory.
The Good Shepherd of Psalm 23 guides his sheep even through the darkest places, comforting them with his presence. Those who place their trust in the Lord have no need to fear even the shadows of disunity, as their shepherd will lead them to dwell together in the Lord’s own house.
St. Paul urges us to “be strong in the Lord and in the strength of his power” by putting on spiritual armor: truth, righteousness, proclaiming the Good News, faith, salvation, the word of God, prayer and supplication.
The Risen Lord urges Peter and each disciple to discover in himself a love of Him who alone is the One True Shepherd.
The witness to Christ that has been confirmed in us obliges us to act jointly for the sake of unity. We have the ability and the knowledge to bear such witness! But are we willing? He invites us to cooperate with Him unconditionally thus we will be able to help one another on the road to unity.
For Your Reflection
On this day the Bible texts show us the Lord strengthening His flock. Following the Good Shepherd, we are called to strengthen each other in the Lord, and to support and fortify the weak and the lost. There is one Shepherd, and we are his people.
- How does the Good Shepherd inspire us to comfort, revive, and restore the confidence of those who are lost?
- In what ways can Christians of various traditions strengthen each other in confessing and bearing witness to Jesus Christ?
- For us today, what can be the meaning of St Paul’s exhortation: “Be strong in the Lord…. put on the whole armour of God”?
Father of all, you call us to be one flock in your Son, Jesus Christ. He is our Good Shepherd who invites us to lie down in green pastures, leads us beside still waters, and restores our souls. In following him, may we so care for others that all see in us the love of the one true shepherd, Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with You and the Holy Spirit, one God forever and ever. Amen.
Source: Greymoor Ecumenical and Interreligious Institute