cris 621x354Christ is risen! Alleluia!
There is a story of a family that had reserved a large hotel room with many comforts. The room they found, however, was small and stuffy. The next morning they complained to the manager. After listening, he asked: did you open the door inside the room? No, they replied. They returned to the suite and opened the door they thought was a closet. To their surprise there was a spacious room with a glorious view, awesome décor, fresh air, and gallons of light flooding the room.

Jesus’ entire life has opened our life’s largest door! In our first reading, Peter rightly proclaims: “everyone who believes in him will receive forgiveness of sins through his name” (Acts 10:43). Christ opens life’s doors; as a result God’s living presence penetrates further than the absurdity of death. God offers victory over human suffering. Easter celebrates a new creation by God who vindicates God’s Son.

By authenticating the person, message, and the career of Jesus, God ecologically and faithfully renews His creation. We now have the freedom to live without despair and without clinging to earthly existence; freedom to look at death in the face not as having the last word; and freedom to serve others disinterestedly knowing that such dedication is of decisive significance. This freedom is born of the realization that God alone is our absolute future and what God did to Jesus, God will do for us. Easter marks the distinctiveness of Christian hope.

If we had all life’s goods on earth, we would still philosophically ask: what is life for? Where do I come from and where am I going? For Christians, Jesus’ resurrection is an invitation to trust that the fullness of life is found in God, who alone satisfies. Karl Rahner says it beautifully: “when we have said everything which can be expressed ... we have not yet said anything about ourselves unless ... we have also included that we are beings who are oriented toward the God. Paul then rightly proclaims: “if you are raised with Christ, seek what is above” (Col 1:3).

Christ’s resurrection brings a revolution born from his death that marked the death of human death. We are thus to be God’s loudspeakers to bring down people from the crosses of dehumanizing poverty, exploitation, and human trafficking. In places where injustice, violence, you name it, reign, people’s tombs are not yet opened. We see these places in the faces of mothers and grandmothers, of children and young people who bear the dreadful burden of injustice and ruthlessness on our African continent. We must roll their stones up for life to flare up again. Jesus does exactly this upon his resurrection. He defeats discrimination done to women in the Jewish society that considered them untrustworthy. He opens the door and turns a new page in history as he announces the defeat of death to and through a woman/women (Mk 16:1-7; Mt 28:1-8; Lk 24:1-10, and Jn 20:13-18).

Christ asks to meet his disciples in Galilee. He equally sends us back to our own “Galilee” where our encounter with him started to re-experience our honeymoon. Yes, Jesus, it’s not the magnitude of your suffering that saved us, but rather the magnitude of your love. Your love has turned suffering into an offering at the Last Supper, which we now celebrate. May this Easter open largely the door of our hearts and help us turn to a new page, now and forever!

By Fr. Marcel Uwineza, SJ

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