Saturday, April 21, 2012

Third Sunday of Easter

What a challenge to our intelligence when we are asked to see beyond Jesus’ tomb. Death could be arrogant and show its “victory” over anyone: Children, elders, men and women, people who see death as a desperate escape and people who never want to face death. One thing is for sure: everyone must face death.
That is what happened to the disciples. Their reaction in the presence of Jesus is astounding. The gospel says they “thought that they were seeing a ghost”. Resurrection is a reality that overwhelmed their senses and paralyzed the understanding and intellect of the disciples.
It is interesting to see that the Resurrected Lord’s presence, rather than helping the disciples to believe, instead causes them doubt and disbelief. Jesus understood this and He asked them: “"Why are you troubled? Why do questions arise in your hearts?” It is hard for us to understand the Resurrection of the Lord, but it happened and it is real.
What our Lord Jesus wants deep inside is to strengthen our faith by showing us himself in a way our minds can comprehend. He is helping us to see and acknowledge His great mercy. He came to visit and stay with us, like our Creed says: For us men and for our salvation he came down from heaven. “Look at my hands and my feet, that it is I myself. Touch me and see, because a ghost does not have flesh and bones as you can see I have.”
We need to believe in Love
In the second reading today we make another step. The fundamental phrase is: “The way we may be sure that we know him is to keep his commandments.” Faith is not just a fairytale that is sweet to our ears. Faith in the Resurrection is the foundation of our life.
The Apostle John talked in this way in the second reading because in his time there were people who pretended that faith was just “gnosis”, just about knowledge, or what our intelligence can understand. They thought that faith was tied only to our souls without any connection to our bodies or how we behave.We Catholics don't separate faith and works.
Against any distortion of our faith, we have received a very specific kind of Faith from the Apostles. As John said in the second reading: "But whoever keeps his word, the love of God is truly perfected in him". And that is the proof that we are in Him.
I believe in you Lord, that you are present in my life. Although I seldom feel your presence, I trust that you are there and will never abandon me. I love you Lord, with my efforts today to pray and experience more deeply your presence and love in my life. Though unworthy, I hope to give witness to your life and resurrection. Lord, increase my faith in you and your sacraments.

Dear Lord, help me to experience you in prayer so that I may become a credible witness of your life and resurrection. Increase my faith in The Eucharist so that I can touch and see you in your Body and Blood, and in your words of forgiveness. Eliminate all anxiety from my life with your simple presence. You are with me, and you have conquered the world.

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