April 18, 2014


Christ is risen! He is risen, indeed! Alleluia!

We have walked our Lenten journey and arrived at Holy Week.

Six weeks of prayer, fasting and almsgiving have, God willing, made us stronger, more committed people of faith.

But our annual pilgrimage during this special time of year is far from over.

On Good Friday, we commemorate the darkest day known to Christianity. This year, on April 18, we mark Jesus Christ’s Passion and death.

But a few days later, a great revelation will bring us unimaginable joy. On Easter Sunday, April 20, we celebrate Christ’s glorious resurrection.

More than 2,000 years later, we are still awed to realize we will receive no greater gift in life—our Savior dying on a cross to fulfill God’s will for humanity.

And we take it a step further, knowing that Jesus Christ rose from the dead, bringing a glorious light to the world and continuing his earthly mission of salvation. He is, indeed, the source of eternal life.

In a world where some government leaders keep trying to push our faith to the backburner, or out of view in many cases, we Catholics and other people who value the tenets of Christianity must not let our unbridled joy be silenced by this reality.

This weekend, and during this Easter season and every day, we need to proclaim that Christ is alive.

During a day of reflection earlier this month with archdiocesan employees, Archbishop Joseph W. Tobin told his audience, “We are again reminded the Cross does not have the final word. … Our faith teaches us that the Cross of Jesus opens the way to abundant life.”

It is also a special time as we welcome the more than 1,000 people throughout the archdiocese who will enter into the full communion of the Church during the Easter Vigil on Saturday evening.

Catechumens—people not yet baptized—will be baptized, confirmed and receive their first Communion at the Easter Vigil. Candidates, who are already baptized Christians, will enter the full communion of the Church by making a profession of faith, being confirmed and receiving their first Communion.

As believers, we need to remind our new brothers and sisters in faith that each time they receive the body of Christ, they become the body of Christ. It is a tenet we would do well to remind ourselves time and time again.

Pope Francis and Archbishop Tobin have also made sure people of faith know how important the sacraments are to their spiritual well-being.

In his much publicized interview last fall in a Jesuit publication, Pope Francis said, “The thing that the Church needs most today is the ability to heal wounds and warm the hearts of the faithful; it needs nearness and proximity. I see the Church as a field hospital after battle.”

At the day of reflection mentioned earlier, Archbishop Tobin told those in attendance, “The sacraments offer healing for those who need it.”

Easter, we know, is a season of hope and joy. We have come from the depths of darkness, and, indeed, see a great light.

One area pastor posed this question to his congregation during a Holy Week homily: How many people believe because of our faith in Jesus?

Let us make others believe because of our faith in Christ—not only on Easter Sunday, but each and every day.

Christ is risen!

He is risen, indeed! Alleluia!

—Mike Krokos

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