Brothers and sisters: If then you were raised with Christ, seek what is above, where Christ is seated at the right hand of God. Think of what is above, not of what is on earth. For you have died, and your life is hidden with Christ in God. When Christ your life appears, then you too will appear with him in glory.
“One day, I promise, when you think of your lost loved one, a smile will come to your lips before a tear comes to your eyes.” Those words have been expressed by President Biden in comforting families who have lost loved ones due to COVID-19 or from other circumstances. To me, it is a powerful Easter message. Jesus gave a perfect offering to God on the cross of Calvary. On behalf of us all He died, and God raised Him and therefore all who believe. Sin and death were destroyed. Yes, we live in this world that is affected by sickness, sin, suffering, and death. Yet, as St. Paul says, we keep our thoughts on things above.
Nothing can separate us from the love of God in Christ. Not even death itself. This year the shadow of the cross has loomed over the whole world. COVID has taken the lives of nearly 600,000 in just this country. The cross has reared its ugly head through racism, hatred, division, lies, misinformation, and violence. Things that seemingly are sacred like freedom, democracy, human life, and religion have been attacked. Sadly, like Calvary, many of us, family, and friends have been in the crowd yelling, “Crucify Him.”
Because of Christ, we and humanity are better than what we have experienced. Easter is about walking from the tomb to a new, better, and brighter future. To walk with Christ is to be open to change in the way we think, listen, and act. It’s dying to the old way and rising to a newer and better person. The cross is hard to embrace because we let go not just of this life but the way we have lived. Easter is about hope. I promise you because of life and faith in Jesus Christ, one day soon we will have a smile on our lips before a tear comes to our eyes.
Happy Easter! He is Risen!
Monsignor John B. McArthur
CBHS Class of 1966