A project of Center of Concern
Education for Justice
Search

Readings

Genesis 1:1-2:2

Genesis 22:1-18

Exodus 14:15-15:1

Isaiah 54:5-14

Isaiah 55:1-11

Baruch 3:9-15, 32-4:4

Ezekiel 36:16-17a, 18-28

Romans 6:3-11

Luke 24:1-12

 

Quotes

I ask everyone with political responsibility to remember two things: human dignity and the common good.

-Pope Francis @Pontifex, May 1, 2014

Readings

Genesis 1:1-2:2

Genesis 22:1-18

Exodus 14:15-15:1

Isaiah 54:5-14

Isaiah 55:1-11

Baruch 3:9-15, 32-4:4

Ezekiel 36:16-17a, 18-28

Romans 6:3-11

Luke 24:1-12

 

Quotes

I ask everyone with political responsibility to remember two things: human dignity and the common good.

-Pope Francis @Pontifex, May 1, 2014

Let us ask the Father of mercies to enable us to live fully the faith graciously bestowed upon us on the day of our Baptism and to bear witness to it freely, joyfully and courageously. This will be the best service we can offer to the cause of Christian unity, a service of hope for a world still torn by divisions, conflicts and rivalries.

-Pope Francis, March 20, 2013

Christ is looking for men and women who will help him to affirm his victory using his own weapons: the weapons of justice and truth, mercy, forgiveness and love.

-Benedict XVI, Urbi et Orbi Message, Easter 2009

Rising from the waters of the Baptismal font, every Christian hears again the voice that was once heard on the banks of the Jordan River: “You are my beloved Son; with you I am well pleased.”

-John Paul II, Christifideles Laici, 11

It would be a contradiction to settle for a life of mediocrity, marked by a minimalist ethic and a shallow religiosity. To ask catechumens: “Do you wish to receive Baptism?” means at the same time to ask them: “Do you wish to become holy?” It means to set before them the radical nature of the Sermon on the Mount.”

-John Paul II, Novo Millennio Inuente, 31

We, like Peter and the women, cannot discover life by being sad, bereft of hope. Let us not stay imprisoned within ourselves, but let us break open our sealed tombs to God – each of us knows what they are – so that he may enter and grant us life.  ….  We see and will continue to see problems both within and without. They will always be there. But tonight it is important to shed the light of the Risen Lord upon our problems, and in a certain sense, to “evangelize” them. To evangelize our problems. Let us not allow darkness and fear to distract us and control us; we must cry out to them: the Lord “is not here, but has risen!” (v. 6). He is our greatest joy; he is always at our side and will never let us down.

-Pope Francis, Easter Vigil Homily, March 26, 2016

 

Thoughts for Your Consideration

Easter Resurrection is about power, liberation and freedom, but not the power of dominating control or of manipulating others.  It is not about the power of a large corporation or bank. It is not control by military force or the use of torture or the manipulation of the mass media or the triumph of money. It is not the power of the media or political insiders. Rather it is the power of non-violent, active, generous love and solidarity.  It is the power that comes from a faith rooted in the great story of the life, death, and resurrection of Jesus. The readings at the Easter vigil highlight the great story of God working in our world over a long period of time for our liberation and life. This great story of liberation continues today even in the midst of our human frailties.

The Easter story is a story of faith.  It is in a spirit of faith and courage that the women went early in the morning to anoint the body of Jesus. The women discovered an empty tomb.  They dealt with a mystery – a puzzle – a great grace. They were invited by the angles in dazzling garments to look in at things in a new way and to become the first sharers of the good news.  It is this spirit that is needed as we too venture out to the “tombs” and “dark places” of our day.  It is this spirit that calls our church to “the frontiers.”

In the baptismal promises, the catechumens (and the entire community in their renewal of baptism promises) renounce sin and all those ideologies and ways of thinking that are contrary to the way of Jesus. They (we) renounce values that are taken for granted by or imbedded in parts of our culture – racism, materialism, consumerism, sexism, militarism, greed, wealth, political power, etc.  This renunciation is a source of freedom and new life for all of us and for the whole world. From the death and resurrection of Jesus flows a challenging vision that changes and challenges the social fabric of the whole world.

As we leave our liturgical celebration of the Resurrection of Jesus, we hope to be “living” in a new way and be share a generous spirit.  We hope to be alive in the spirit of Christ, the Christ who shared our life, spoke up for the oppressed, healed the sick, fed the hungry, and even risked death.  It is this spirit that we hope to share with our world.

“Let us ask the Father of mercies to enable us to live fully the faith graciously bestowed upon us on the day of our Baptism and to bear witness to it freely, joyfully and courageously. This will be the best service we can offer to the cause of Christian unity, a service of hope for a world still torn by divisions, conflicts and rivalries.” ~Pope Francis, March 20, 2013

 

Stories

If Easter is about freedom, these humorist stories might be interesting take off point for our reflections:

In a Year, I’ll be Five (http://on.cc.com/1MkEd1a)

A man escaped jail by digging a hole from his jail cell to the outside world. When finally his work was done, he emerged in the middle of a preschool playground.

“I’m free, I’m free!” he shouted.

“So what,” said a little girl. “I’m four.”

The Old Prisoner—The Hunchback of Notre Dame (http://bit.ly/1MkDXPQ)

 

Questions for Reflection in your Faith Sharing Group

What are some of the ways of thinking and acting in our 21st century culture that are contrary to the values and spirit of Jesus?  [When you renounce sin, what are you renouncing?]

+++++

Can you name a person in your experience who seems to embody the experience of Resurrection?  Tell us about this person.

+++++

In first vigil reading from Genesis, we are reminded that creation is good and indeed very good.  How does this reality move you into a new respect for and commitment to the care for our common home – our earth and especially for the poor and most vulnerable?

 

Actions – Links

Catholics Confront Global Poverty

Wage Theft

 

“Crazy Facts”

Child Poverty in the United States

Source: http://bit.ly/2ojFCvy.

 

Prayers of Intercession

Response: Risen Jesus, bless us with newness of life.

For an end to the violence, terrorism, and war that divides and pains our world, we pray….

For an end to all the racism and discrimination that oppresses people in our world, we pray….

For an end to the materialism and consumerism which distorts our values and harms our environment, we pray….

For an end to hunger and all poverty, we pray….

For an end to atmosphere of negativity in our political life and campaigns, we pray….

For the sick who are denied quality health care, we pray….

For equal opportunities for employment at a living wage, we pray….

For a new spirit of justice and peace for all God’s people, we pray….

For a new spirit of hope and joy as we work to create a welcoming community, we pray….

 

Prayers

Let there be an end to the chain of hatred and terrorism,

which threatens the orderly development of the human family.

May God grant that we be free

from the peril of a tragic clash

between cultures and religions.

May faith and love of God

make the followers of every religion

courageous builders of understanding and forgiveness,

patient weavers of a fruitful inter-religious dialogue,

capable of inaugurating a new era of justice and peace.

-John Paul II, Urbi et Orbi Message, Easter 2003

+++++

God of the universe, God of our hearts,

we thank you for the gift of Jesus, whose resurrection we celebrate this month. We thank you for the model he was to us while on earth – a model of wisdom, loving kindness, and mercifulness. We thank you for his fierce compassion for humankind.

We ask that we will be mindful of Jesus’ example as we engage with others, whether they are powerful or powerless. We ask that we remember to pray for our enemies and to bless those who mock, criticize, and persecute us.

We pray for peace for this world. We ask you to breathe peace into those areas of profound generational conflict. Breathe your deep peace like an emergency medic breathes air into endangered lungs. Resuscitate hope for peace into the people living in these lands. Breathe hope for peace into us as well.

We thank you for the gift of presenting these requests, these concerns, before you. We are grateful that you bend your ear, your heart, toward us. We are confident that you hear our prayers and will act on them.

We praise and bless your holy name, Amen.

-June Mears Driedger, Resuscitating Hope

 

Images

http://bit.ly/1MkVkzY

http://bit.ly/1MkVnMe

 

Copyright © 2017, Education for Justice, a project of Center of Concern.

Easter Vigil – Holy Saturday

April 15, 2017

Date Added: April 10, 2017

Click here to view free sample resources.