Interior Disposition

cropped-12670625_1043880122349208_7485065142345623303_n.jpgI feel that Easter is an awesome time for reflection. We have fifty days of being with the Risen Christ. On that Easter morning, Mary Magdalene, Mary, the mother of James, and Salome found the tomb empty. The angel told them to go to Galilee where they will see him. Why Galilee? It is the place where they first met the Lord, where they first caught his gaze, they learned to love him. Knowing now that he had risen from the dead, they go back to retell the story and realize with greater depth and truth, his message that will change the course of history. They ran back to their Galilee. The Holy Father put it eloquently:

In the life of every Christian, after baptism there is also another “Galilee”, a more existential “Galilee”: the experience of a personal encounter with Jesus Christ who called me to follow him and to share in his mission.  In this sense, returning to Galilee means treasuring in my heart the living memory of that call, when Jesus passed my way, gazed at me with mercy and asked me to follow him. To return there means reviving the memory of that moment when his eyes met mine, the moment when he made me realize that he loved me.

In today’s Gospel, we hear of another disciple of Jesus, doubting Thomas. We can often be a reflection of Thomas when we are so unbelieving in the wonder of what God can do for us. We have moments when we fail to recognize the Resurrection of Christ in those parts of our lives that remain in darkness and that remain in the shadow of Good Friday. Perhaps, we desire to remain in the Good Friday feelings of lost hope and despair thinking that God cannot be bigger than our personal issues and tragedies.

The Easter Season calls us out of this mode. As the baptized, we are called to live in the Resurrection of Jesus Christ. God takes despair and gives hope; God takes a tragedy and allows the light of Christ to curse the darkness. There is no tragedy so great, no sin, no situation in which God’s mercy cannot break through, in which God’s love cannot redeem us.

Let us return to our Galilee, return to our first love and to that moment when we received that flame ignited us for the preaching of the Gospel and of the Resurrection of Christ. To find Galilee is not like the search for Easter eggs in which we try to find something outside of ourselves. It is the journey within, a journey to the heart! Galilee is that place where we know him by his name and he calls us by OUR NAME!


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The simple truth of Easter

8278a7c5cea6965e49961b394960e95eThe angel “refers to Jesus by a beautiful title. He calls him “Jesus the Crucified.” And then he announces that he is not here in the tomb where he had been laid, for he has been raised. He has been raised, but his name will always be “Jesus the Crucified,” for never can we forget the love displayed through the long hours of his dying. And now God the Father confirms that act of love, accepts it, fixes it forever and establishes the Crucified permanently in glory. He is “the Lamb once slain who dies no more and lives forever as Jesus the Crucified, Lord and Messiah” (Abbot Jeremy Driscoll’s Homily of Easter Vigil in the Night, 2017).

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Final Word


It was now about noon and darkness came over the whole land until three in the afternoon because of an eclipse of the sun. Then the veil of the temple was torn down the middle. Jesus cried out in a loud voice, “Father, into your hands I commend my spirit”; and when he had said this he breathed his last. -Luke 23:44-46

As we contemplate these final words, I point you to the beginning. In Genesis, we recount how God made everything that is good, beautiful, and true in six days and on the seventh day God rested from the work God had undertaken (cf. Genesis 2:1-4).

After his final words, Jesus rested from all the work he had undertaken to win us back. Jesus teaches us to entrust our fragile and broken lives to the Father.

God has given full disclosure into suffering love as being perfect caritas. God publicly displayed Perfect Charity as Jesus begged the Father for reconciliation, promised paradise to the Good Thief, gave us a Queen Mother who will crush the head of the serpent, disclosed his utter longing for us in his thirst, fulfilled all his promises, and now shows us the power of dying.

The words of our Lord were tragic for every man and yet they also permeate a deep calm that comes from trusting the Father and the determined will of Jesus to abandon himself totally to his Father. May we be so bold to commend our lives to the Father at every stage and every moment of this pilgrimage toward heaven.

As I bring my thoughts to a close, there is one character we cannot forget: the soldier who stood at the foot of the cross, and who professes, according to Saint Matthew, “Truly this man was the Son of God” (Matthew 27.54). This truth came after he witnessed our Lord scourged, mocked, spat on, and ridiculed.

This nameless soldier saw the horror of suffering; he was an eyewitness to the betrayal of Judas; he heard the lies fabricated among the Pharisees; he saw Pilate judge the Lord; he heard Jesus’ cry of abandonment. He saw unbelievable cruelty and the silence of a distant God.

At the same time, the soldier witnessed the incredible love of God. For his enemies Jesus forgave; for the thief, Jesus promised paradise; for his mother, Jesus secured a new family; and to the God who had abandoned him, Jesus abandoned himself to the Father. The soldier saw the horror of Good Friday and was moved to Truth that God over-compensates his love in his Son Jesus, who loved us perfectly in his suffering. This soldier professed that love which refused to die that disguised itself in the horror of the cross.

Keep watch as the soldier and see what Jesus sees. Keep watch because the very weakness of God, found here on Good Friday, is stronger than human strength. We have come face to face with what it means to be Christian which is not the result of an ethical choice or a lofty idea, but the encounter with an event, a person, which gives life a new horizon and a decisive direction. This encounter has brought us to the profound truth of who we are, whom we love, and who loves us.  

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