Tuesday, 11 April 2023 : Tuesday within Easter Octave (Homily and Scripture Reflections)

Liturgical Colour : White

Dear brothers and sisters in Christ, today as we continue to progress through this blessed and most joyful Easter Octave, a period of great rejoicing and thanksgiving for God’s great love and kindness for us, let us all turn towards the Lord and renew our hope in Him, remembering how He has come into our midst precisely so that He might redeem us all sinners, and reconcile us all to our most loving Father and Creator. The Resurrection of Our Lord Jesus Christ proved to us that death is not the ultimate end of all things, and that our fate is not to be one of death and destruction, but rather that of eternal life and a new existence in grace and love together with God. Death has come to us because of our disobedience and sins against God, but Christ, by His willing and most generous embracing of our weakened and unworthy selves, have opened for us the path out of the darkness and sins.

In our first reading today, as the continuation from the Acts of the Apostles, we heard how many of the assembled people in Jerusalem asked St. Peter and the other disciples about whatever they had done, and the wicked deeds which they had committed in rejecting their Lord, Master and Saviour, by condemning Him to death on the Cross. But St. Peter reiterated again how Christ has come into this world in order to gather all those who have been lost to Him, to be our most loving Shepherd and Guide so that all of us may find our path to the salvation in the Lord, our most loving, compassionate and merciful God. St. Peter reassured all of them that through Christ and by their repentance, in rejecting the sins and wickedness that they had committed, they would be reconciled and reunited with God, and God would grant them His Holy Spirit to strengthen and guide them all to Himself.

In our Gospel passage today, we then heard of how Mary Magdalene, one of the first of the women to go to the tomb of the Lord Jesus on Easter Sunday morning, only to find the tomb to be empty, lamented the disappearance of the Lord’s Body, and thought that His Body must have been stolen by someone. The Angel of God appeared to her and the other women, reassuring them all that the Lord has risen from the dead and was no longer in His tomb. Then the Lord Himself appeared to Mary Magdalene, and revealed Himself to her, how He has truly risen from the dead. It is all these revelations and truth which the Lord has revealed to His disciples and followers, through His other appearances throughout the period between His Resurrection and Ascension into Heaven, witnessed by many of His followers, which reassured and strengthened them in their faith in God.

Brothers and sisters in Christ, as Christians, which means that we believe in Christ, His truth, His words and wisdom, and in His Resurrection, and that He is truly the Son of God and the Saviour of all, all of us have received the same revelation and truth as that of the other disciples of the Lord. We have received all these truths and wisdom through the Church, and through the many teachers and ministers of our faith. God has shown Himself and His truth to us, calling us all to Himself and entrusting to us the same mission that He has given to His Apostles and disciples, that is to proclaim His Good News, the Good News about His coming and His works of salvation amongst us, and His Resurrection by which He has overcome sin and death, and won for us a great victory in the struggle against the forces of evil, leading us all into a new path towards eternal life.

All of us are called and reminded to be truly committed to the Lord as we continue living our lives daily as Christians. And throughout this Easter season, all of us should use the time and opportunity to share the joy of Easter we have with each other, and with more and more people that we encounter each day. We are all reminded that in Christ we have received the sure guarantee of eternal life and salvation, and as long as we remain firmly attached to Him and as long as we continue to hold firm to His path and believe in His truth, we shall receive the fullness of God’s grace and love. We are truly the Easter people and Alleluia is our song, just as Pope St. John Paul II once said it. But we cannot be an Easter people without the right attitude, that in our lives we have to radiate the light of Christ, the joy and desire to serve and glorify the Lord through all of our actions and works.

Brothers and sisters in Christ, let us all therefore spend some time in this Easter season to live our lives more worthily as Christians, dedicating our time and efforts to walk ever more righteously in the path that the Lord has set before us. This is a time for us to remind ourselves what it means to be Christians. Each one of us should live our lives with ever greater commitment to proclaim the Risen Lord in our every actions and lives. We should truly embody our faith in our every works and efforts, so that we may inspire everyone who witness our actions and interact with us in any capacity, that we will inspire more and more to come ever closer to the Lord and to find their path towards Him. That is why this Easter is the best opportunity and time for us as we go forth from all of our Easter joy, to go and proclaim joyfully the Lord’s Resurrection to the nations.

But we cannot truly proclaim the Risen Lord unless we are truly wholehearted and committed to Him in all things, and we have to be truly converted in our hearts and minds. This is why we have to do whatever we can to do God’s will in our lives, even in the smallest things we do. Unless we do this, then we are not being truly obedient and truthful in our following of the Lord, in our Christian duty and obligations, and in carrying out our missions as those who follow the Lord and obey His commandments. We have to be good examples to our fellow brethren, and we have to commit ourselves to our missions as Christians, which God has entrusted to us, in our various capacities and using the talents, abilities, gifts and opportunities that He has granted us. This Easter we are all reminded that we all need to go forth with joy to the world, and be evangelising, missionary disciples.

Brothers and sisters in Christ, let us all hence go forth joyfully and share our faith with everyone we encounter, in a respectful and loving way. Let us all show our joy this Easter and be truly filled with Easter joy, reminding ourselves that Easter is truly a greater celebration than Christmas. If we have shown our joy in Christmas, then our joy this period and time should be doubled and even more. But let our joy always be focused on Christ, Our Lord and Saviour, and let our attention always be centred on the Risen Christ, on the glory of His Resurrection and everything that He has done for us, for our salvation and redemption. May God bless us always and may the grace of the Risen Christ be with us all. Amen.

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