The night that broke the prison bars of death
Reflections on the readings for The Resurrection of the Lord at the Easter Vigil in the Holy Night of Easter (April 20, 2019): GN 1:1—2:2; PS 104:1-2,5-6,10,12,13-14,24,35; GN 22:1-18; PS 16:5,8,9-10,11; EX 14:15—15:1; EX 15:1-2,3-4,5-6,17-18; IS 54:5-14; PS 30:2,4,5-6,11-12,13; IS 55:1-11; IS 12:2-3,4,5-6; BAR 3:9-15,32—4:4; PS 19:8,9,10,11; EZ 36:16-17,18-28;PS 42:3,5; 43:3,4; ROM 6:3-11; LK 24:1-12
MISSIO offers “Preaching Mission,” as a homily help, providing connections to mission from the readings of Sundays, Feast Days and Holy Days.
Light and Word, Baptism and Eucharist… After the forty somber days of Lent and the three profound days of the Triduum, we meet at this Holy Vigil with the glory of God bursting out of the darkness of the tomb.
We followers of Christ gather to rejoice in His risen presence after the sadness and grief of His death. After the lighting of the Easter fire and the carving of the Pascal candle, we hear the Easter proclamation declare that this is a “truly blessed night, when things of heaven are wed to those of earth.” Scripture readings recounting events from the creation of the universe in Genesis to the Resurrection of Jesus inspire our faith and encourage our hope. The Gospel speaks about the loyal women who go to offer Christ their final homage, but things are not what expect at the tomb. Nothing is the same, because everything has changed. The stone is rolled away and their Lord is gone. Then angels ask them, “‘Why do you seek the living one among the dead? He is not here, but He has been raised. Remember what He said to you while He was still in Galilee, that the son of Man must be handed over to sinners and be crucified, and rise on the third day’” (Luke 24:5-7).
Life has overcome death, not just for our Savior but for the saved as well. The Son of God died for all His beloved people, asking only that we open our hearts to His mercy. In the darkness of this night, bright with the light of divine love, we welcome all who seek the healing waters of Baptism. And we join with them as we are all nourished by the Body and Blood of our Lord. Together we celebrate the reality of God’s compassion for His children not just for all time, but also beyond time. Happy Easter!