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EASTER SUNDAY

 
The stone had been moved away from the tomb
Jn 20: 1-9
 
As we prepared for the Easter Vigil here at Bonnevaux, there has been a lot of competition. It has mostly been between the birds in the trees and the frogs in the lake to see which could make the loudest noise. That’s the most obvious struggle. There’s also the competition between trees and bushes competing as to which can become greenest soonest in the sudden warm sunshine that we are enjoying; and let us not forget the insects. All links in the Great Chain of Being that unites us and everything in the cosmos to the Word through whom all things came to be and who became flesh and died for us and rose again.
 
In the great second century homily we read every year at this time, the Risen Christ speaks with the irresistible authority of love to those from the beginning of time he is releasing from hell:
 
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.
 
Resurrection is the result of love entering into what has died and calling it back to life, a broken relationship, a desperate failure, a broken world or a dying planet. Only love of the first order, the spring of agape, can break down the walls and weapons constructed by the illusions, pride or hopelessness of the ego.
 
If we feel outside this, observers or doubters waiting to be convinced and if we ask how I can verify this, the same homily shows us in the words of Christ:
 
Rise, let us leave this place, for you are in me and I am in you; together we form one undivided person and we cannot be separated.
 
To see the Risen Christ, we have only to enter that space of simple oneness in ourselves where we are outside nothing and nothing is outside us. We continue after these forty days on the same pilgrimage which led us into it. Thank you for sharing it with me and all the others. And thank you for the wonderful team of translators in ten languages who were patient with me as my main resolution of this Lent, to get the daily reflection to you two days in advance, was broken. Betrayed and betrayer can unite with the one from whom we cannot be separated as we say:
 
Alleuia!
CHRIST IS RISEN. HE IS RISEN INDEED
​
Laurence Freeman
Lenten Reflections 2023
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