Second Sunday of Easter

The appearance of the risen Jesus moves the disciples from a state of fear locked behind closed doors to an experience of joy and wonderment.  The Lord’s greeting, “Peace be you,” was a common Hebrew greeting.  Yet hearing those words on the lips of the one who suffered and died, and now stands among them, gave them a new richness.  Peace (in Hebrew, shalom) is not just the absence of conflict; it is an experience of deep confidence that dispels fear and is full of hope.  As Jesus showed them the wounds in His hands and His side, they knew that the risen one was truly their beloved master who died on the cross.

The mandate Jesus gives His disciples is a summary of His life and ours: “as the  Father has sent me, so I send you”.  As the word of God, Jesus revealed the Father for all to see—through His teachings, His healing signs, and finally His total self-gift on the cross.  Now Jesus sends us, His disciples, on that same mission.  We are to be to the world what Jesus has been to the world.  We are to embody the Fathers love, to teach and heal, to comfort and bring peace, to love as Jesus loved.

Jesus enlivened and empowered His disciples as he breathed on them and said “Receive the Holy Spirit”.  Much as the Creator breathed life into the first human being, Jesus breathed His Spirit into God’s new creation, the community of disciples empowered to forgive, heal, teach and love.

God Bless

Msgr. Powell