Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who in his great mercy gave us a new birth to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, to an inheritance that is imperishable, undefiled, and unfading,
Thank you for joining today as we continue in our Easter joy. Christ is risen! He is risen indeed! Alleluia!
In our Epistle today we hear St. Peter speaking of our new birth, our living hope, and our inheritance that is eternal and indestructible. These words are wonderful, and they mark out how we are set apart.
Consider how last Sunday, on the Solemnity of the Resurrection, we saw Peter and John running to the tomb, encountering the victory of Jesus over death, and a bit confused. Remember that we heard the words: they did not yet understand the Scripture that he had to rise from the dead.
Now the tone has changed, there is confidence, a surety that this wonderful thing God accomplished was not just for Jesus, but for all of us. The disciples encounter with Jesus gave us a new perspective and a wonderful possession – eternal life that we celebrate today.
Our confidence does not come from mere speculation or wishful thinking. It does not come from the fantasy visions of some religious person. It comes from a lived encounter with the resurrected Jesus.
When Jesus entered the place where the disciples were He offered the simple statement: “Peace be with you.” He established that peace by offering His disciples and us confidence – that as His followers we have entered a new Kingdom reality.
The living Jesus, the victor over death left us something precious, the community of faith described in today’s reading from the Acts of the Apostles.
We often speak of our Holy Church as the full expression of the Pristine Catholic faith.
The truth of that statement lies not just in the way we administer the Church, our democratic tradition (All who believed were together and had all things in common). It lies most importantly in the fact that we receive and live – really live – the teaching of the apostles, the communal life, the breaking of bread, and prayers.
Jesus did not want the disciples to go separate ways, to abandon hope or to doubt and have no confidence. So, He left us powerful grace for our assurance, a communal life centered on Him, and His abiding presence. That allows us to live the resurrected promise of Jesus with vigorous faith because we have nothing to fear, we have nothing to doubt.
Let us then embrace confidence and live the victory we possess in perpetual Easter joy knowing that we fully share in living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead.