Christ is risen! Christ is risen indeed!
We enter into the liturgical season of Easter, yet, all around us, we don’t see resurrection, but death and violence.
We may go back to Good Friday, and ask – where is God? Or we may be like the disciples who lost all hope, hiding, mourning.
Or will we be like the women, who knew what they had to do on Easter morning, and be surprised at what they discovered. Are we looking for the living among the dead?
Prayer – Easter Witnesses (Mark 16 & Matthew 28) by Irene Zimmerman
The heady fragrances they carried
Rose above their heads like incense,
Exorcising the garden of death.
“Who will roll away the stone for us?”
The women whispered to one another.
Earlier, in the near-dawn darkness,
They had posed the question to the others –
As request, not challenge.
They had no heart to challenge the flock
Hiding in terror behind secret doors.
None of the men had offered to go,
So the women had set out in haste alone
To straighten twisted feet and fingers,
Comb black blood from matted hair,
Anoint the precious body with spices.
“But who will roll away the stone?”
They whispered again as they neared the tomb.
“Jesus said prayer could move mountains.
We must stay together, continue to believe.”
They stepped firmly forward, balancing their heavy jars.
When they looked up, they saw that the stone,
Which was very large, had already been rolled back.
Inside, they heard from a being dressed in light:
“You are looking for Jesus who was crucified.
He has been raised; he is not here.”
Fleeing from the tomb,
Intent on telling no one,
They tripped pell-mell over terror and amazement
Onto the glowing feet of Jesus.
“Go, tell the others!” he commanded.
After the telling, they set out in haste –
Together this time, a community of equals –
To roll away stones, straighten crooked paths,
Comb the far countries,
Anoint the precious world with Good News.