Category Archives: Easter, Ascension & Pentecost

Benedict: to awaken hope in place of despair, joy in place of sadness, & life in place of death

Holy Saturday Baptism.jpgIn these first days of Easter the Church rejoices in
Christ’s resurrection from the dead, which has brought new life to us and to
our world. Saint Paul exhorts us to make this new life evident by putting to
death the things of this earth and setting our hearts on the things that are on
high, where Christ is seated at the right hand of the Father (cf. Col 3:1-2).
Having put on Christ in Baptism, we are called to be renewed daily in the
virtues which he taught us, especially charity which binds all the rest together
in perfect harmony
. By living this new life we are not only interiorly
transformed, but we also change the world around us. Charity in fact brings
that spiritual freedom which can break down any wall, and build a new world of
solidarity, goodness and respect for the dignity of all. Easter, then, is a
gift to be received ever anew in faith, so that we may become a constant leaven
of life, justice and reconciliation in our world
. As believers in the risen
Lord, this is our mission: to awaken hope in place of despair, joy in place of
sadness, and life in place of death.
With Christ, through him and in him, let
us strive to make all things new!

Pope Benedict XVI
Summary of Wednesday General Audience

Easter Wednesday: how slow of heart to believe

Emmaus Velazquez.jpg

The supper at Emmaus raises questions for us: Does my heart really seek the Lord? What did we see happen to us during these last days? How have I changed given the events of the Three Holy Days? What does the Lord really want from me? What does it mean to remain with the Lord?
Only the heart tells the truth.

Easter Monday: why it matters

Thumbnail image for Easter Monday April 25 2011.jpgThe day following Easter Sunday, indeed, all of the Easter Octave, is just as important as the Easter mystery of the solemn celebration of the Resurrection: the concrete risen Lord fulfills his promise of new Life. Pope Benedict said today at Castle Gandolfo today, “With greater joy than ever, the Church celebrates
these eight days in a special way, as she recalls the Lord Jesus’s resurrection
from the dead. Let us pray fervently that the joy and peace of Our Lady, Mary
of Magdala and the Apostles will be our own as we welcome the risen Lord into
our hearts and lives
. I invoke God’s abundant blessings upon you all!”

A slight shift in our daily prayer moves from praying the Angelus three times a day (at least) to the Regina Coeli, another radical call to live the Gospel is known in this prayer. With the Mother of the Savior we call the promise come true.

Queen of Heaven, rejoice, alleluia.
For He whom you did merit to bear, Alleluia.

Has risen, as he said, alleluia.
Pray for us to God, alleluia.

Rejoice and be glad, O Virgin Mary, alleluia.
For the Lord has truly risen, Alleluia.

Let us pray.

O God, who gave joy to the world through the resurrection of Thy Son, our Lord Jesus Christ, grant we beseech Thee, that through the intercession of the Virgin Mary, His Mother, we may obtain the joys of everlasting life. Through the same Christ our Lord. Amen.

Easter Urbi et Orbi 2011: Christ’s resurrection happens in history, permanently remembered and lived

Urbi et Ordbi Easter 2011.jpg

resurrectione tua, Christe, coeli et terra laetentur!

In your resurrection, O
Christ, let heaven and earth rejoice!” (Liturgy of the Hours).

Dear Brothers
and Sisters in Rome and across the world, Easter morning brings us news that is
ancient yet ever new: Christ is risen! The echo of this event, which issued
forth from Jerusalem twenty centuries ago, continues to resound in the Church,
deep in whose heart lives the vibrant faith of Mary, Mother of Jesus, the faith
of Mary Magdalene and the other women who first discovered the empty tomb, and
the faith of Peter and the other Apostles.

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Benedict’s Easter Vigil 2011 homily:

Easter Vigil 2011.jpgDear Brothers and Sisters, The liturgical celebration
of the Easter Vigil makes use of two eloquent signs. First there is the fire
that becomes light. As the procession makes its way through the church,
shrouded in the darkness of the night, the light of the Paschal Candle becomes
a wave of lights, and it speaks to us of Christ as the true morning star that
never sets – the Risen Lord in whom light has conquered darkness. The second
sign is water. On the one hand, it recalls the waters of the Red Sea, decline
and death, the mystery of the Cross. But now it is presented to us as spring
water, a life-giving element amid the dryness. Thus it becomes the image of the
sacrament of baptism, through which we become sharers in the death and
resurrection of Jesus Christ.

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About the author

Paul A. Zalonski is from New Haven, CT. He is a member of the Fraternity of Communion and Liberation, a Catholic ecclesial movement, and an Oblate of Saint Benedict. Contact Paul at paulzalonski[at]
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