Thoughts on the Readings for Easter Sunday (A) 2017

For this Sunday’s readings click on the link below or copy and paste it into your browser. https://www.usccb.org/bible/readings/041617.cfm 

As a child, Easter meant only one thing:  the end of Lent and a return to eating candy and other sweets.  (Giving up sweets was the Lenten activity of “forced” choice in our family.)   As I grown older, and especially now as an adult, I have come to appreciate Easter --- not just as the end of Lent --- but as much more.  It is the celebration of Christ’s resurrection, his promise to abide with us always and his offer of eternal life to believers.   

At the Mass of the Easter Vigil and at the Masses on Easter morning we always read one of the accounts of the finding of the empty tomb.   In this regard, it is important to note that while all four Gospels, tell the story of the finding of the empty tomb and recount various resurrection appearances of Jesus, there are no accounts of the actual resurrection in any of the Gospels.  The reason for this is that the resurrection is a divine event.  It is not something that can be taken in by our human senses or consciousness.  It is something believers experience only at the time of death when we come to know fully the promise and gift of eternal life.   

The readings listed above are for the Mass on Easter Sunday morning.   The first reading is a part of a speech by Peter.  It is a brief synopsis of Jesus’ ministry and his ultimate death and resurrection.  Peter reminds the people that:  “He (Jesus) commissioned us to preach to the people and testify that he is the one appointed by God as judge of the living and the dead.”    The second reading reminds us that: “When Christ your life appears, then you too will appear with him in glory.”   Finally, the Gospel contains the account of the finding of the empty tomb by Mary of Magdala.   We are told that: “she ran and went to   Simon Peter and to the other disciple, whom Jesus loved, and told them………...”  They in turn ran to tomb and found it empty just as Mary had said.   

Questions for Reflection/Discussion:

  1. What helps you to believe in or hinders your belief in the resurrection?
  2. Where do you see evidence of Christ’s resurrection in the world --- in your community --- in your life?  
  3. Why do some people have difficulty believing in the resurrection and the promise of eternal life?    
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