We all know the pain of loss and the stages that follow in and through grief. The Good Friday experience demonstrates this loss and the rawness of the death of Jesus. Resounds with the effects of loss and grief. Paul suggests we embrace these in-between times by entering the tomb via our baptism. It is an imitation in death, and there will be one in the resurrection. So simply, we die to sin and rise to be like Christ Jesus.
Yet, while accepting this, we know ourselves and our humanity. We grow afraid, lose heart and are afraid – yes, we can be just like these early followers of Jesus. But, we are called through the gospel to be people of ‘hope’ that this transformation from death to life is open to us all. Like the caterpillar, we can emerge from the darkness to share in the life of Jesus. In practical terms, this ‘process’ is one dying to oneself and recognising the centredness of God in all things. As seen through the ‘Advent’ experience – Emmanuel – “God with us”
The women who reach the tomb are brought into light and in and through Jesus they are sent – they are affirmed to carry Jesus with the message to the brothers -that he ‘alive’ – “Go to Galilee! Hope is alive just as Jesus is alive!!!
Some encouraging thought from Pope Francis on Hope:
- “People should love, believe and follow their dreams, never despairing because Jesus is always with them, Pope Francis said.”
- “When life hits hard, they should try to get up again, letting others help them, and if they are bored, they should concentrate on doing good things for others.”
- “Believe in the existence of the most noble and beautiful truths” and trust that God, through the Holy Spirit, is ushering everything toward the good, toward “Christ’s embrace.”
- “Believers are not alone in their faith. There are others who hope, too. “The world goes on, thanks to the vision of many people who created an opening, who built bridges, who dreamed and believed, even when they heard words of derision around them.”
- “Never believe the struggles here on earth are “useless.” God never disappoints, and he wants that seed he planted in everyone to bloom. “God made us to flower, too.”
- “Wherever you are, build.”
“When you go into the garden of prayer, do not collect the leaves of good feelings; rather, gather the fruit of imitating the virtues of Jesus.” (St Paul of the Cross)
Paul Traynor is married to Clare and has two children Sam and Lucy. He lives in Greytown which is in the Wairarapa Region on the North Island of New Zealand. Paul is currently working as the National Passionist Family Groups Coordinator for Aotearoa, New Zealand.