Easter Vigil Scripture Readings:
Genesis 1:1-2:2 Exodus 14:15-15:1 Isaiah 55:1-11
Ezekiel 36:16-28 Romans 6:3-11 Mark 16:1-7
As I read the reading from Ezekiel, I thought to myself how these words written some 2600 years ago refer to us the baptized that first sacrament we all received that might very well be under appreciated or misunderstood by all of us.
“These are the People of the Lord.
I will sprinkle clean water upon you to cleanse you of your impurities, and from all your idols I will cleanse you.
I will give you a new heart and place a new spirit within you, taking from your bodies your stony hearts and giving you natural hearts.
I will put my spirit within you and make you live by my statues, careful to observe my decrees.
You shall live in the land I gave your fathers;
You shall be my people, and I will be your God.”
The early Christian community knew that the life, death and resurrection changed everything and everyone forever and for the better.
The early Christian community knew that now was the time to go home, to go to the neighbors, to go to the people in the streets and proclaim the Good News that He lives, He has been raised!
Every Easter we share, we hear the greeting, “Happy Easter.”
But, it might be better to say, “We are an Easter people.”
Jesus did not live, die and rise so we could have another Holiday.
Jesus rose so that all people past, present and to come would know of his life, his love, his care, his concern, his forgiveness, his presence now and eternally.
The early Church understood that greetings are fine but they also understood that they, like us today, are called to be, Easter people.
• Easter people who care for others.
• Easter people who make sure no one is in need.
• Easter people who know God’s Spirit is working among them.
• Easter people who come to understand that God does not favor or love some people more than others. Rather all people are equal in the sight of God.
• Easter people who seize the opportunity to be active witnesses to their faith, wherever they are, in word and example.
• Easter people who know of their faults and failings and sins, but more importantly embrace their God, who is a God of mercy and love and life eternally for all. A God who is always waiting for us to come home.
May our Easter celebration this year be more than a holiday.
May this Easter be the year that we take the step or take the next step in being Easter people every day of our lives.