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THE LORD IS RISEN! HE IS ALIVE! ALLELUIA! The resurrection as the core of our Christian belief is the final triumph of good over evil.
The suffering and death of Jesus is vindicated. His sacrifice on the cross became perfect when the Father accepted it and stamped it with his final glorification. When Jesus poured out everything of himself as an offering in an experience of total emptiness (Kenosis), the Father transformed it into life overflowing with grandeur and fullness (Pleroma).
As an historical event, there were no eyewitnesses in the strict sense who saw Christ coming out from the tomb. The irony was that the disciples of Jesus did not even expect that he would rise again although he predicted it for a number of times. In fact, the four evangelists relate that Mary Magdalene together with the other women went to the tomb not to greet a risen Christ but brought spices to anoint Jesus’ dead body. After they met the risen Lord and reported it to the disciples, the latter did not believe because for them it seemed to be an idle tale (Lk. 24:11). The empty tomb was not a proof of the resurrection, it was a sign pointing to the glorified Christ, as the angel announced “He is not here…” (Lk 24: 5).
The rolled stone is a powerful symbol for us to ponder on if we want to experience our own resurrection, here and now. Unless we are able to roll that burial stone of our sinfulness away from the tomb of our old selves, we will be like the disciples lurking in the deep darkness of our consciousness. Unless we are ready to unbind others of their burial clothes and we let go of our hatred, biases and hurts, we will be like the soldiers guarding the tomb of other people.
We are an Alleluia people! Like Jesus, we may experience Good Fridays and feel abandoned by others and God yet our life is meant for something greater than our pains and sufferings. We may cry our hearts out and be brought to our own experience of passion either by our own faults or by the other people yet God will never abandon us even if it seems he is so far away. We just have to learn to abandon ourselves and let go of our fears that shackle us until we are able to come into terms in surrendering our life at the end to our God who at times may bring us to our own cross which is for our own good.
Jesus had to appear to his disciples to cast away their doubts and give them peace, thus they became the witnesses of the resurrection. The risen Lord continues to appear to us so that we are able to witness our faith to the world. He appears to us in our workplace, in the kitchen, the hospitals, the courtrooms and most especially when people are marginalized and oppressed.
We celebrate today this greatest feast and on every Sunday which we call a mini-Easter as we look forward to our own personal resurrection.