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Sunday, March 23, 2008

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Easter Sunday

Romans 6:3-11
Acts 10:34, 37-43
Colossians 3:1-4 or
1 Corinthians 5:6-8

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new and now

"They killed Him, finally, hanging Him on a tree, only to have God raise Him up on the third day." —Acts 10:40

Alleluia! Today is one of the greatest days in our lives. This is the first day of the fifty-day Sunday, the Easter season. Alleluia! When we believe in our hearts that Jesus is risen from the dead (see Rm 10:9), everything is transformed and made new. Life is no longer overshadowed by death. The fear of death no longer enslaves us (Heb 2:15). Death has lost its sting (1 Cor 15:55). Death is not our enemy but our friend; it is not so much the end, but the beginning.

We have "full confidence that now as always Christ will be exalted through" us, whether we "live or die" (Phil 1:20). For, to us, " 'life' means Christ; hence dying is so much gain" (Phil 1:21). "Now all is new!" (2 Cor 5:17) We need not wait until our death to share in Christ's resurrection. We can share in Jesus' resurrection now. Through baptism and a life of faith, we have already "been raised up in company with Christ" (Col 3:1). We set our hearts "on what pertains to higher realms where Christ is seated at God's right hand" (Col 3:1). We are "intent on things above rather than on things of earth" (Col 3:2). Now the main purpose of life is to be a witness that Jesus is risen from the dead (see Acts 10:41-42).

Alleluia! Easter is new and now.

Prayer:  Risen Jesus, raise me from the tomb of doubt into the light of faith.

Promise:  "Let us celebrate the feast not with the old yeast, that of corruption and wickedness, but with the unleavened bread of sincerity and truth." —1 Cor 5:8

Praise:  Alleluia! Jesus is risen. He is alive! He lives forever!

Rescript:  †Reverend Joseph R. Binzer, Vicar General Archdiocese of Cincinnati, August 14, 2007

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