Is the significance of Easter the end of a period of abstaining, fasting, repenting, confessing, almsgiving, praying, and retreating? Today we celebrate Easter Sunday or Resurrection Sunday. What does this mean to our lives as Catholics? Easter is the greatest feast of the liturgical year. We are an Easter people, people of the Resurrection. However, many of us do not grasp the significance of the Resurrection of Jesus, which Easter celebrates, as the foundation of our faith.
Easter is the season of new life, new life won by Jesus Christ in His Paschal Mystery; His life, death and resurrection. Jesus came as the way for us to reach the heart of the Father. Easter then is a special time that celebrates new life inviting us to a deeper, more intimate relationship with Jesus. We are under the grace of God and have been reconciled to God.
The fifty days from Easter Sunday to Pentecost are celebrated in joyful exultation as one ‘‘great Sunday’’. During this season, above all other, it is a time to sing Alleluia and to rejoice in the Resurrection of Jesus.
The joy of Easter is that we now have the opportunity to approach the throne of grace. The celebration of Easter also helps us to become aware of our gifts, talents and the purpose of our lives.
To help us enter into the Easter season and live the joy and power of the resurrection, I invite us to look at the areas in our lives that have been “tombed in”. We can pray that angels will be sent to roll the stones away. We must have confidence in the victory of Christ. Any event in our life that needs to be resurrected should be offered to God so that we can experience the resurrection in these areas of our lives.
The Readings during the Easter Season all profess the joy of the resurrection as we prepare for the coming of the Holy Spirit. The Easter mystery is not just a one day celebration but an entire life experience that we focus on for the six weeks of Easter.
Let us pray that we may enter more fully into the Easter Mystery; that we may experience the joy and new life found in the resurrection; that we may prepare our hearts for a fresh outpouring of the Holy Spirit and use the gifts of the Holy Spirit for the building of God’s reign.
– Bernadette Gopaul-Ramkhalawan, Archdiocesan Catechetical Office