Easter Sunday, Resurrection of the Lord
Sunday, April 20, 2014
Disciples at the Tomb
Today’s Readings: Acts 10:34a, 37–43; Psalm 118:1–2, 16–17, 22–23 (24); Colossians 3:1–4 or 1 Corinthians 5:6b–8; John 20:1–9. Knowing what we do now, it’s probably impossible to imagine ourselves in the situation of Mary of Magdala, Peter, and the other disciple. How would we respond to the empty tomb? Mary was the first to see that something was amiss, but she interpreted the stone that had been removed as evidence that someone had “taken the Lord out of the tomb.” First Peter, and then the other disciple enter the tomb and see the linen wrappings. Their orderly arrangement is a sign that this is not a case of grave robbery. It will take time for the disciples to process the clues, for they are not thinking about Resurrection just yet. They are lost in the mystery—a good place to be.
This is the day that the Lord has made, and so the entire Church stands and sings, “Let us rejoice and be glad in it.” The Eucharist is our source and sign of unity. In the second option for the second reading, Paul uses the metaphor of cleaning out old yeast (old sinful behavior) so that we can celebrate the festival with the new “unleavened bread of sincerity and truth.”
Mary of Magdala is often called the first disciple, since she was the first to bring news of what the disciples would later understand as the Resurrection. Can you name some women in today’s Church who are proclaiming the Resurrection of Christ? If you have women religious or other women on your parish staff who are lay ecclesial ministers, thank them for the work they do.