Tuesday, April 2, 2013

Gospel Reflection

April 02, 2013
Tuesday – Year of Faith – Easter Season
In the Octave of Easter
by Rev. Fr. Benjamin “Benjo” Fajota (Vice Rector of the EDSA Shrine)
12:15PM Mass, Mary, Queen of Peace Shrine (Our Lady of Peace Quasi Parish/EDSA Shrine)
Reading 1 Acts 2:36-41

On the day of Pentecost, Peter said to the Jewish people, “Let the whole house of Israel know for certain that God has made him both Lord and Christ, this Jesus whom you crucified.”

Now when they heard this, they were cut to the heart, and they asked Peter and the other Apostles, “What are we to do, my brothers?” Peter said to them, “Repent and be baptized, every one of you, in the name of Jesus Christ, for the forgiveness of your sins; and you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. For the promise is made to you and to your children and to all those far off, whomever the Lord our God will call.” He testified with many other arguments, and was exhorting them, “Save yourselves from this corrupt generation.” Those who accepted his message were baptized, and about three thousand persons were added that day.

Responsorial Psalm PS 33:4-5, 18-19, 20 and 22

R. (5b) The earth is full of the goodness of the Lord.
R. Alleluia.
Upright is the word of the LORD,
and all his works are trustworthy.
He loves justice and right;
of the kindness of the LORD the earth is full.
R. The earth is full of the goodness of the Lord.
R. Alleluia.
See, the eyes of the LORD are upon those who fear him,
upon those who hope for his kindness,
To deliver them from death
and preserve them in spite of famine.
R. The earth is full of the goodness of the Lord.
R. Alleluia.
Our soul waits for the LORD,
who is our help and our shield.
May your kindness, O LORD, be upon us
who have put our hope in you.
R. The earth is full of the goodness of the Lord.
R. Alleluia.

Gospel Jn 20:11-18

Mary Magdalene stayed outside the tomb weeping. And as she wept, she bent over into the tomb and saw two angels in white sitting there, one at the head and one at the feet where the Body of Jesus had been. And they said to her, “Woman, why are you weeping?” She said to them, “They have taken my Lord, and I don’t know where they laid him.” When she had said this, she turned around and saw Jesus there, but did not know it was Jesus. Jesus said to her, “Woman, why are you weeping? Whom are you looking for?” She thought it was the gardener and said to him, “Sir, if you carried him away, tell me where you laid him, and I will take him.” Jesus said to her, “Mary!” She turned and said to him in Hebrew, “Rabbouni,” which means Teacher. Jesus said to her, “Stop holding on to me, for I have not yet ascended to the Father. But go to my brothers and tell them, ‘I am going to my Father and your Father, to my God and your God.’” Mary went and announced to the disciples, “I have seen the Lord,” and then reported what he had told her.


The Lord is risen, Alleluia. We are celebrating the joyful mystery of the Lord's Resurrection for eight days, that is why we are now in the Octave of Easter. It's as if we celebrate Easter Sunday every day of the week until the eighth day. Finally, everything that will be given to us, everything that will unfold unto us, will be the joy that the Resurrection of our Lord Jesus Christ brings to our hearts and our lives. 

At the start, Mary Magdalene was in grief, because of the loss of her Master. But that grief turned into joy when she recognized Jesus, and she went on announcing this good news to the disciples of Christ. A lot of literary writers and commentators say that this is the recognition scene. We also have this kind of joy in our hearts whenever we share with others the good news that happen in our lives. 

I would like to share with you part of one of the epics of Homer called 'The Odyssey'. It is the scene when Odysseus was finally reunited with his wife, Penelope, after years of separation because of war. When the servant of Penelope told her that her husband is back, she could not believe it. She went down and saw an old man, tattered, in ragged clothes, and she could not recognize him as her husband. But then she asked something from him which only he could know. And when he answered it, she knew that it was her husband. Her knees became so weak. With tears in her eyes, she ran to her husband and kissed his head. The recognition scene.

My dear brothers and sisters, every time we attend the Eucharist, we are recognizing the joyful Paschal Mystery of Jesus Christ. He not only offers His head for us to kiss, but He offers us His Body and Blood for us to keep in our hearts, for us to have joy in our hearts, in our lives. 

My dear brothers and sisters, we are joyful because we have responded to the invitation of God for us to come and share in the joy of the Resurrection of Christ. Believe. Have faith. All our grief will turn into joy. Happy Easter. Amen.

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