“Jesus is risen from the dead! This message resounds in the Church the world over, along with the singing of the Alleluia… He remained two days in the tomb; but his death contained God’s love in all its power, released and made manifest on the third day, the day we celebrate today: Easter of Christ the Lord… Death, solitude and fear are not the last word. There is a word that transcends them, a word that only God can speak: it is the word of the Resurrection” (Pope Francis).
R. This is the day the Lord has made; let us rejoice and be glad.2nd Reading:
“Let us admire, congratulate, rejoice, praise, adore; because through the death of our Redeemer we are called from darkness to light, from death to life, from exile to home, from grief to everlasting joy” (St. Augustine). “Who is the one that is not filled with hope of obtaining confidence and courage when he gazes trustfully on the position of our Lord’s crucified body? His head is bent to give us the kiss of peace, his arms extended to receive us, his hands pierced to pour his blessings upon us, his heart opened to love us, his feet nailed to the cross to soften our hearts and remain with us” (St. Bernard Clairvaux).
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R. Father, I put my life in your hands.2nd Reading:
This evening’s Gospel “contains a phrase that is the very core of what Jesus did for us: having loved his own who were in the world, loved them to the end… Jesus loves us to the point of giving us his life.” (Pope Francis) It is not a coincidence that this assurance of the Lord’s love is joined to the institution of both the Holy Eucharist and Holy Orders: Jesus continues to stoop, wash us, serve us, sanctify us – to love us – through the priesthood and Eucharist.
Our heart feels a joy mixed with sadness at sight of the Master’s seemingly ephemeral triumph, prelude of suffering and death. Today’s Mass recognises that Jesus’ full glory will come at the Resurrection. Our greatest sorrow and shame is our great relief – the cross. Jesus’ experience of being love and hated, welcomed then rejected, provides us with the strength to endure the caprices and injustices of our own life.
R. My God, my God, why have you abandoned me?2nd Reading:
Matthew 21:1-11, Matthew 26:14-27:66