Saint Thomas of Canterbury, Bolton

Stay with us, Lord, on our journey

Cycle C

Easter Sunday

grunewald resurrection.jpg

 “Till this moment they had failed to understand …”

The disciples of Jesus were devastated. Men and women alike, they were demoralised and frightened, in hiding for fear that what had happened to Jesus may happen also to them. They had been with Jesus during his ministry; they had heard his proclamation of the Reign of God and had seen the miraculous signs of its inauguration. They had put their trust in him and had been full of hope. Now their hopes were shattered by a horrible crucifixion that had humiliated Jesus and all but declared the end of his story.

Suddenly, in the midst of all their grief and fear and confusion, these same men and women were transformed into devoted witnesses for Jesus. They became prepared to risk everything for the sake of spreading the good news of Jesus whom they now perceived to be the Christ, the Son of God. Far from continuing to hide in fear, they now went out ready even to face death itself in service of the gospel. What brought about this radical change was their experience of Jesus as raised from the dead and glorified as the Christ.

His body had not been stolen nor had he simply come ‘back to life’. Jesus was now experienced in faith as alive, present, and transformed into a new kind of existence. It was their experience of the risen Lord that brought about in them this deep conversion of faith and with it the beginnings of the Church. With this experience commenced a ‘new creation’ where there is hope for peace and justice in the world, and for eternal life beyond it.