“We are now standing in the face of the greatest historical confrontation humanity has gone through. I do not think that wide circles of the American society or wide circles of the Christian community realize this fully. We are now facing the final confrontation between the Church and the anti-Church, of the Gospel and the anti-Gospel. This confrontation lies within the plans of divine providence. It is a trial which the whole Church… must take up.” Karol Cardinal Wotyla (Sept. 1976)

Saturday, April 3, 2010

The Best of VCR: Easter's Lesson: Evil's Mortal Wound

This is one of my favorite pieces ever written. I read it throughout the year whenever I am discouraged and it puts everything into perspective. Easter is meant to lift up the discouraged. Just think of the mindset of the apostles and followers (including Mary below) that morning before witnessing the empty tomb. Blessed Easter to all!

"... Two days later, early in the morning, a converted sinner is found walking in a cemetery — she whose heart had been captured by Him without, as other men had done, laying it waste. She was in search of a tomb and a dead body which she hoped she might anoint with spices. The idea of the Resurrection did not seem to enter her mind — she who herself had risen from a tomb sealed by the seven devils of sin. Finding the tomb empty she broke again into a fountain of tears. No one who weeps ever looks upwards. With her eyes cast down as the brightness of the early sunrise swept over the dew-covered grass, she vaguely perceived someone near her, who asked: "Woman, why weepest thou?" (John 20:15).

Mary, thinking it might have been the gardener said: "Because they have taken away my Lord; and I do not know where they have laid him."

The figure before her spoke only one word, one name, and in a tone so sweet and ineffably tender that it could be the only unforgettable voice of the world; and that one word was: "Mary."

No one could ever say "Mary" as He said it. In that moment she knew Him. Dropping into the Aramaic of her mother’s speech she answered but one word: "Rabboni"! "Master"! And she fell at His feet— she was always there, anointing them at a supper, standing before them at a Cross, and now kneeling before Him in the Glory of an Easter morn.

The Cross had asked the questions; the Resurrection had answered them.

The Cross had asked the question: How far can Power go in the world?. The Resurrection answered: Power ends in its own destruction, for those who slew [their God] lost the day.

The Cross had asked: Why does God permit evil and sin to nail Justice to a tree? The Resurrection answered: That sin, having done its worst, might exhaust itself and thus be overcome by Love that is stronger than either sin or death.

Thus there emerges the Easter lesson that the power of evil and the chaos of any one moment can be defied and conquered, for the basis of our hope is not in any construct of human power, but in the Power of God Who has given to the evil of this earth its one mortal wound — an open tomb, a gaping sepulchre, an empty grave. "
-Archbishop Fulton J. Sheen

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