April 1, 2018 Cycle B
by Rev. Jose Maria Cortes, F.S.C.B.
Sunday Reading Meditations
In the name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit. Amen.
After the Sabbath, at the dawn of the first day of the week, three women went to Jesus’ tomb in order to pay their final respects. On their way, they were asking themselves: “Who will roll back the stone for us from the entrance to the tomb?” (Mk 16:3). They had no idea that they were about to become the first witnesses to the greatest event in human history: the Resurrection of Christ.
Jesus’ Resurrection is the central truth of our faith. It fills our hearts with joy and hope. Jesus is truly risen! He is alive! When we say this, we are not talking about a myth or a parable. He is really among us!
How can we be certain? Where can we find signs that Christ is alive?
In today’s Gospel, Mary Magdalene, Mary, mother of James, and Salome went to the tomb to anoint a dead person. Their hopes had ended with Jesus’ last breath on the Cross. It was all over. Now they only had to mourn the dead and keep his memory alive in their hearts.
When they arrived at the tomb, they were astonished to find the stone rolled back and a mysterious young man sitting on it. God had sent an angel to roll back the stone and announce Jesus’ Resurrection.
The angel was the witness who knew what had happened and was already surrounded by the light of the Resurrection, a light that did not come from within but radiated from something greater than himself.
In this angel, we can see the Church, all the witnesses through whom we have received the gift of faith. In him, we see all the testimonies that help us to live our faith now.
The stone symbolizes human despair, everything that prevents us from achieving happiness and fulfilling our destiny. The stone of the tomb is the experience of death, the experience of limitation. The stone symbolizes what we cannot overcome by our efforts, what is impossible for us.
We can believe in Jesus’ Resurrection because we have already seen God’s action in our lives. Many stones have already been rolled back. If we attentively contemplate our stories of faith, we cannot fail to recognize the power of the action of Our Lord at certain moments in our lives.
The angel and the stone are signs through which Jesus shows us that he is alive.
If we examine the witnesses with listening hearts and look for signs of God’s action around us, we know that Jesus is truly risen. He is alive!
Let us ask for the celebration of Easter to increase the certainty of our faith and renew our joy, peace and hope. Let us ask for the courage to be bold witnesses to the Resurrection. Amen.