Dear Passionist Family Group Members and Friends,
We come to this time of our Christian calendars where we stop and reflect on the Passion and Resurrection of Jesus. St Paul of the Cross (founder of the Passionists) stated that,” the most overwhelming act of God’s love is in and through the Passion of Jesus”. He said, on his death bed , “that if I had only one sermon to give, it would be on the Passion” -God’s great capacity to forgive, shown compassion and love to all humanity, all life.
Over the past seven weeks we have been witnessing another ugly side of humanity – the horror of Ukraine accompanied by the displacement of so many people, the bloodshed, violence and atrocities all laid bare. On the other hand we have witnessed the welcome that so many have received from surrounding nations which is evidence that love and mercy are still very much active. It seems to me that whatever the circumstances or trials; our faith demands that we look out for each other; ask for help and assistance and be a sign, of God’s presence , offering hope, practical support, guidance and friendship. If we don’t ask for support or assistance how will others know if we are struggling. Hiding away only increases our isolation and opens up further scope for mental health issues.
We all know grief and loss, and this Good Friday has us stepping back into that; to acknowledge the pain and sorrow of others and our own as well. To walk , in the shoes of those lost in war, those who are displaced, those who suffer mental illness, those whose relationships are broken , those who are afraid and live in fear, those brave souls standing up for what they believe – against all odds, those who walk with others with only peace and compassion in mind, those who seek to overlook mistakes and wait, ready to forgive, those who seek to follow Jesus and feel short of the mark, those who walk with faith and trust to be the best they can be.
There is a death that occurs in the faith journey; a dying to one’s self, the work to overcome the demanding ego. This dying is essential in the spiritual journey. It is a going into the tomb to be like the caterpillar whose dark place transforms it into an emerging butterfly ,in colours that dance and move with joy at our creation. To recognise the risen Jesus in breaking bread with family and friends. To seek to live as the early Christians – to serve, to ensure all are looked after, to distribute our excess, to bring hope, peace, joy, laughter and fellowship to every table we sit at. We rise with renewed courage to follow in the footsteps of Jesus. Let this be our Easter. Alleluia! Alleluia!
Happy Easter to you all – Love, prayer and blessings, Paul
Easter Sunday Year C, 17 April 202
We are invited to reflect, ponder, and treasure these things in our hearts throughout Eastertide
First reading: Acts 10:34, 37-43
Responsorial Psalm: Ps 117(118):1-2, 16-17, 22-23
Second reading: Colossians 3:1-4 / 1 Corinthians 5:6-8
Gospel: John 20:1-9
Link to readings – click here
Happy Easter! Welcome to this Easter season, a 50-day meditation on the mystery of the Lord’s Resurrection.
We begin it, today, by visiting the empty tomb with Mary, Peter and John (Gospel). All of them fail to understand the teaching of the scripture at first, but then John sees and believes – just as we are invited to reflect, ponder, and treasure these things in our hearts throughout Eastertide.
The First Reading depicts the evangelist Peter sharing with the household of Cornelius, the Good News that he himself had received. His desire to witness, his energy, and his conviction are evident. The ‘day made by the Lord’ (Psalm) has come to Cornelius and his family, and like the psalmist, Peter ‘rejoices and is glad’ alongside them.
Belief in the resurrected Jesus brings the fruit of forgiven which clears out the yeast of evil to make way for the gifts of sincerity and truth (Second Reading).
“It Can’t Be Carried Alone”
(Father Richard Rohr OFM wrote the following poem in response to the collective suffering of the people of Ukraine.)
How can we not feel shock or rage at what is happening
to the people of Ukraine—
As we watch their suffering unfold in real time
from an unfair distance?
Who of us does not feel inept or powerless
before such manifest evil? In this, at least, we are united.
Our partisan divisions now appear small and trivial.
Remember what we teach: both evil and goodness are,
first of all, social phenomena.
The Body of Christ is crucified and resurrected
at the same time. May we stand faithfully
Inside both these mysteries (contemplation).
In loving solidarity, we each bear what is ours to carry,
the unjust weight of crucifixion,
in expectant hope for God’s transformation.
May we be led to do what we can on any level (action)
to create resurrection!
Why are skeletons so calm?
Because nothing gets under their skin.
What did Mars ask Saturn?
“Hey, can you give me a ring some time?”
Why can’t you trust an atom?
Because they make up everything.
What do clouds do when they become rich?
They make it rain!
Why shouldn’t you make fun of a paleontologist?
Because you will get Jurasskicked.
Want to hear a potassium joke?
Why are helium, curium, and barium the medical elements?
Because if you can’t heal-ium or cure-ium, you bury-um.
What’s the fastest way to determine the sex of a chromosome?
Pull down his genes!
How did the chemist feel about oxygen and potassium hanging out?
What is it called when Silver Surfer and Iron Man team up?