YEAR C: HOMILY FOR EASTER SUNDAY OF THE RESURRECTION OF THE LORD ( Mass of the day)
HOMILY THEME: HE HAS RISEN!!!
BY: Fr. Clem C. Aladi.
HOMILY: GOSPEL: JOHN 20: 1-9.
“ Faith in the resurrection of Jesus says that there is a future for every human being; the cry for unending life which is a part of the person is indeed answered. God exists: that is the real message of Easter.
-Pope Benedict XVI
My dearest People of God, with Joy of the resurrected Lord I welcome you to this Easter Sunday Celebration. Shout Alleluia! Alleluia!! Alleluia!!! for He has risen indeed. Do not abandon yourselves to despair. We are the Easter people and hallelujah is our song – John Paul II
Through the Sundays of Lent, the church invited us to fast, to pray, to give arms, to renew our covenant with God, to prepare ourselves to face temptations of the world, the self, and the devil. We followed our Lord closely on the path of suffering and pains. We denied and deprived ourselves many pleasures in order to strengthen the grace of God in Us. We followed Jesus on that path of suffering and shame. On Palm Sunday He was welcomed triumphantly into Jerusalem and was later condemned to die. On Holy Thursday, he gave us the greatest gift of His abiding presence with us in the Eucharist and taught us to serve others. On good Friday He finally paid the price of our sin with his body on the cross and declared that the work of our redemption has been completed – it is finished. On Holy Saturday he laid in the grave and descended into hell but on the third day, He rose again.
Who could have believed that the stone that covered the grave could be rolled away? This was the anxiety of Mary Magdalene who went to anoint His body in the early morning hours of that glorious day. Who would have imagined or believed that He who was buried in the tomb would ever rise again? Jesus demonstrated His omnipotent power by overcoming the power of death the last enemy of man. He broke the chains of enslavement that held Him captive in the grave and rose gloriously into newness of life to reign forever as the king of heaven and Earth. The resurrection of Christ is the basis of our Christian Faith. It is the greatest of all miracles — it proves that Jesus is God. That is why St. Paul writes: “ If Christ has not been raised, then our preaching is in vain; and your Faith is in vain (cf 1cor 14:15)
My dearest our earthly experience often swings between suffering and Joy. It was His suffering that brought us new life and the joy we celebrate today. God could save the world through any other means but He chose to take the way of the cross, the way of suffering and death to redeem us. He did not avoid the pains of good Friday to Win the crown of Easter Sunday. He embraced the cross to win the crown of glory, this is a great lesson to us all. In resurrected pain, sorrows, and disappointments, Easter reminds us that with faith in the resurrected Christ, we can overcome even the greatest challenge or misfortune. It is our belief in the Real Presence of the Risen Jesus in our souls, in His Church, in the Blessed Sacrament and in Heaven that gives meaning to our personal, as well as to our common, prayers. Our trust in the all-pervading presence of the Risen Lord gives us the strength to fight against temptations and freedom from unnecessary worries and fears.
Like Mary Magdalene, Peter, and the other disciple who went to the tomb and are eyewitnesses to the miracle of the empty tomb, we are convinced that He who raised Jesus from the dead will all raise us up on the last day, that is why the resurrection of Christ is a pledge of our own resurrection (cf.Jn 11:25-26). We are convinced that the power that broke the shackles of death will liberate us from the captivities of earthly bondage. Dear child of God has faith in the resurrected Lord. His power is manifested in the lives of those who have faith and trust in him. Your story will not end on Good Friday, your Easter, your victory must surely come. In short, the message of Easter is that nothing can destroy us – not pain, sin, rejection or death – because Christ has conquered all these, and we too can conquer them if we put our Faith in Him.
As we celebrate Easter, glorious season of Easter, remain firm to your Lenten resolutions. We are not supposed to lie buried in the tomb of our sins, evil habits, and dangerous addictions. Easter gives us the Good News that no tomb can hold us down anymore – not the tomb of despair, discouragement or doubt, nor that of death. Instead, we are expected to live a joyful and peaceful life, constantly experiencing the real presence of the Risen Lord in all the events of our lives. Remember that the struggle to overcome sin continues. The devil is not asleep, so we must not go on holidays from fasting, praying and almsgiving.
May the power of the resurrection make you victorious in all your difficulties and liberate you from any force(s) that holds you bound from rising again, or any power that holds you in captivity. I declare your freedom may you continue to enjoy the liberty of the children of God. We are Easter people and Alleluia is our song. Let us go therefore and proclaim the good news, spreading peace, love, joy among ahold. Let this Easter joy bring to an end all conflicts, enmity misunderstanding, unforgiveness among us, Let the light of Christ shine in our hearts again.
” The Resurrection miracle is nothing to you and me if it is only an event of many centuries ago. Unless we can live the immortal life – unless we can receive God to his own home in these hearts of ours – the gospel texts are nothing to us unless our daily lives illustrate them.
I keep you and your Family always in my Prayers as I wish you a peaceful and grace-filled Easter celebration.
Fr. Clem C. Aladi.