Easter Sunday - Year B ~ March 31, 2024

Easter Sunday – Year B ~ March 31, 2024


Easter is the feast of all feasts, as the saints have proclaimed throughout the ages. Easter is the great cause for rejoicing because it is the promise of eternal life fulfilled. Jesus our Lord and Savior has broken the bonds of death and restored us to life. Saints have broadcast the message unceasingly, from past to present centuries.

Alleluia, Alleluia He is Risen Alleluia. Today we celebrate the victory over the death by our Lord. He is truly risen from the dead, Alleluia, Alleluia. According to St. Augustine “it was impossible for the Author of life to stay under the earth for long” The Christians all over the world have been preparing themselves with prayer, penance, and work of charity to celebrate the greatest feast of all times, that’s Easter. No one expected that a man who was once crucified was going to rise. St. Paul rightly says in his first letter to Corinthians “Death has been swallowed up in victory. “Where, O death, is your victory? Where, O death, is your sting?”  The sting of death is sin, and the power of sin is the law.  But thanks be to God, who gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ”. St. Paul’s writing to the Thessalonians reminds them to seek what is above, not what is here on earth, because St. Paul knows everything on this earth is going to pass away.

Something strange is happeningthere is a great silence on earth today, a great silence and stillness. The whole earth keeps silence because the King is asleep. The earth trembled and is still because God has fallen asleep in the flesh, and he has raised up all who have slept ever since the world began. God has died in the flesh and hell trembles with fear. He has gone to search for our first parent, as for a lost sheep. Greatly desiring to visit those who live in darkness and in the shadow of death, he has gone to free from sorrow the captives Adam and Eve, he who is both God and the son of Eve. The Lord approached them bearing the cross, the weapon that had won him the victory. At the sight of him Adam, the first man he had created, struck his breast in terror, and cried out to everyone: “My Lord be with you all.” Christ answered him: “And with your spirit.” He took him by the hand and raised him up, saying: “Awake, O sleeper, and rise from the dead, and Christ will give you light.” I am your God, who for your sake have become your son. Out of love for you and for your descendants I now by my own authority command all who are held in bondage to come forth, all who are in darkness to be enlightened, all who are sleeping to arise. I order you, O sleeper, to awake. I did not create you to be held a prisoner in hell. Rise from the dead, for I am the life of the dead. Rise up, work of my hands, you who were created in my image. Rise, let us leave this place, for you are in me and I am in you; together we form only one person, and we cannot be separated.

For your sake I, your God, became your son; I, the Lord, took the form of a slave; I, whose home is above the heavens, descended to the earth and beneath the earth. For your sake, for the sake of man, I became like a man without help, free among the dead. For the sake of you, who left a garden, I was betrayed to the Jews in a garden, and I was crucified in a garden. See on my face the spittle I received to restore to you the life I once breathed into you. See there the marks of the blows I received to refashion your warped nature in my image. On my back see the marks of the scourging I endured to remove the burden of sin that weighs upon your back. See my hands, nailed firmly to a tree, for you who once wickedly stretched out your hand to a tree. I slept on the cross and a sword pierced my side for you who slept in paradise and brought forth Eve from your side. My side has healed the pain in yours. My sleep will rouse you from your sleep in hell. The sword that pierced me has sheathed the sword that was turned against you. Rise, let us leave this place. The enemy led you out of the earthly paradise. I will not restore you to that paradise, but I will enthrone you in heaven. I forbade you the tree that was only a symbol of life, but see, I who am life itself am now one with you. I appointed cherubim to guard you as slaves are guarded, but now I make them worship you as God. The throne formed by cherubim awaits you, its bearers swift and eager. The bridal chamber is adorned, the banquet is ready, the eternal dwelling places are prepared, the treasure houses of all good things lie open. The kingdom of heaven has been prepared for you from all eternity.

Mary Magdalene went to visit Jesus’ tomb early in the morning and found an empty tomb with the stone rolled away. She must have felt heart broken and her hope crushed. Just imagine if someone has died in the family and how family must be feeling over the death of a dear one.  Prophet Job explains his situation in these words when he felt hope is somewhere “But when I looked for good, evil came;
and when I waited for light, darkness came.
 My inward parts are in turmoil and are never still; days of affliction come to meet me. I go about in sunless gloom; I stand up in the assembly and cry for help.  I am a brother of jackals, and a companion of ostriches. My skin turns black and falls from me, and my bones burn with heat.  My lyre is turned to mourning, and my pipe to the voice of those who weep” (Job 30:26-31). Even Prophet Jeremiah saw no hope in people when they turned away from the Lord “We look for peace, but find no good, for a time of healing, but there is terror instead”. Moreover, he cries for his people imploring for the mercy of God “My joy is gone, grief is upon me, my heart is sick.  Hark, the cry of my poor people from far and wide in the land: “Is the Lord not in Zion?  Is her King not in her?” (“Why have they provoked me to anger with their images, with their foreign idols?”) “The harvest is past, the summer is ended, and we are not saved.” For the hurt of my poor people I am hurt, I mourn, and dismay has taken hold of me. Is there no balm in Gilead? Is there no physician there Why then has the health of my poor people not been restored? (Jeremiah 8:15, 18-22).

Even though the whole world is suffering but hope lives forever because St. Paul beautifully reminds us with these words “You then, my child, be strong in the grace that is in Christ Jesus; and what you have heard from me through many witnesses entrust to faithful people who will be able to teach others as well.  Share in suffering like a good soldier of Christ Jesus.  No one serving in the army gets entangled in everyday affairs; the soldier’s aim is to please the enlisting officer.  And in the case of an athlete, no one is crowned without competing according to the rules.  It is the farmer who does the work who ought to have the first share of the crops.  Think over what I say, for the Lord will give you understanding in all things.  Remember Jesus Christ, raised from the dead, a descendant of Davidthat is my gospel, for which I suffer hardship, even to the point of being chained like a criminal. But the word of God is not chained.  Therefore, I endure everything for the sake of the elect, so that they may also obtain the salvation that is in Christ Jesus, with eternal glory. The saying is sure: If we have died with him, we will also live with him;  if we endure, we will also reign with him; if we deny him, he will also deny us;  if we are faithless, he remains faithfulfor he cannot deny himself (2 Timothy 2:1-13).

Today as we celebrate the solemnity of our Lord’s resurrection, we need to believe that our Hope lives forever. Remember what St. Irenaeus said, “Christ opened heaven for us in the manhood he assumed”.  St. Athanasius invites everyone this feast day “The Lord calls his ransomed people to sing songs of victory”. St. Augustine opens our heart and minds to understand that we are people of hope, and our hope never ever dies “The resurrection of Christ was God’s supreme and wholly marvelous work”.

Today let’s act like Mary Magdalene who didn’t stop there but her reaction was priceless. She rushed back to inform the disciples and the reaction of St. Peter and other disciple is beyond comparison. They ran to see that their Hope has risen. St. Peter exclaims in these words in the Acts of the Apostles “Now I know there is no partiality in God”. Let’s remember the Feast of Easter is a feast of proclamation of his resurrection and victory over death.  Our Hope lives forever even in a time when we are under the lockdown of fear. Are we ready to proclaim “Truly he is Risen, Alleluia, Alleluia?

I just like to share few quotes from saints on Easter with you. “The glory of God is that man lives. Behold, man lives in Christ. Here is the moment in which what he, Christ, said is accomplished: ‘I am the resurrection and the life; whoever believes in me, even if he dies, will live’ (John 11:25).” St. John Paul II

“Jesus Christ, Lord of all things! You see my heart; you know my desires. Possess all that I amyou alone. I am your sheep; make me worthy to overcome the devil. St. Agatha

“Here is the good news! Risen Jesus is the authentic ‘Gospel of life.’ He communicates divine life to man, the dignity of a child of God. From the apostles we have received this good news, which we must bring ‘to the heart of every man and woman’ by placing it ‘in the innermost folds of the whole society.”’ St. John Paul II


Yesterday I was buried with Thee, O Christ. Today I arise with Thee in Thy resurrection. Yesterday I was crucified with Thee: Glorify me with Thee, O Savior, in Thy kingdom (Ode 3, Paschal Canon).


Wish you all a very Blessed and Happy Easter.