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04.12.2020 @ 12:01 pm

“They have taken the Lord from the tomb, and we don’t know where they put him” (John 20:2).

Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ:

Imagine if you were Mary of Magdala, everything you have seen doesn’t make sense at all.

Just the day before yesterday, you were standing at the foot of the Cross witnessing the only Man who truly loves you die the most gruesome death. You saw how He responded while His enemies kept taunting Him. You heard from Him no word of insult for all the insults He received; never was there a tit-for-tat, no quid pro quo! He took them all as if He had no pride. You saw how He prayed for them and asked the Lord God Whom He called Abba to forgive them. He even defended them before the Almighty by making excuses for them, that they were ignorant: “they do not know what they are doing.” That doesn’t make sense at all for now He is gone.

It makes no sense because only a week ago, you were there with Him in Bethany. You saw how He wept for His friend, Lazarus, who had died and was buried in the tomb for four days. You saw how He loved him and his sisters, Martha and Mary. You saw how meek, how kind, how compassionate He was to them and everyone present. Then you and the whole village witnessed Him raising Lazarus from death to life with a word. You are a living witness to His life-giving love. But now He’s gone!

It doesn’t make sense at all because it was only like yesterday, your life was bogged down in the filth of sin. You made a living by selling yourself to men. You were desperate to find love but no one wanted you. The Devil saw you and wanted you. Seven of them took over your life. You became their slave and they, your masters. But then, somehow, He came. He was looking for you as if you were His long lost love. He came for you in person and for you alone. He looked at you and saw through you. He never condemned you. He gazed at you with love and you could feel it; it was true. He reached out to you and you gave Him your heart. He unbounded you and delivered you from the unclean demons. He saved you. He became your reason for living. You determined from then on that you will not love or serve anyone but Him. But now your love is gone! It makes no sense at all.

You were there with his Mother at the foot of the Cross and witnessed how He expired. You saw how the heavens turned dark as night and the earth trembled in fear at His death. Then you saw how a Roman soldier took a lance and pierced His heart tearing it apart. You saw how blood and water poured down on you and anyone standing near. Along with His Mother, you could not stop crying. You would rather die with Him.

You were there with His Mother when they took Him down from the Cross and placed Him in the tomb. You wanted to bury yourself in the tomb along with Him, but they took you away. It was Sabbath day. No one could stay. You went home waiting and wishing for the Sabbath to pass over quickly so you could come to Him. But then when you came to visit Him at the earliest hour before dawn, His tomb was open; the boulder, rolled away! His body was nowhere to be found. Why? It doesn’t make sense at all.

Everything He did or said becomes meaningless because He is no longer there. What He did, no one could repeat. What He said, no one would dare to say. But for the poor and desperate people like you, He was the only hope, the only light in your life. Now He is gone. Everything He said no longer makes any sense.

How could you “love your enemy?” How could you “turn the other cheek” when they keep hurting you again and again? How could you “pray for your enemies and forgive them” not just “seven times” but “seventy times seven?” These words carry no meaning because He is dead. And His deeds, yes, they were miraculous. At the command of His word, He turned sorrow into joy when He turned “water into wine,” fed thousands with “five loaves of bread,” made “the lame walk, the blind see, lepers clean;” He set free “the demoniac” and brought “the dead back to life.” Indeed, He did all that but now they have no meaning. All your hopes and dreams have collapsed into nothing. The only thing you could cling on to is His dead body. But He is nowhere to be found. The tomb was open and empty. That doesn’t make sense at all.

You heard that Pontius Pilate, the governor, authorized the Temple’s soldiers to guard His body in the tomb. How could anyone dare to come and seize it? Why would anyone do such a thing? Who would want to steal the corpse of a condemned crucified criminal? What would they do with a dead corpse? It doesn’t make sense at all.

Imagine if you were Mary of Magdala, does any of this make sense to you? Is there any meaning to all this? Is there God in heaven?

Life or death, heaven or hell, good or evil, love or suffering, sin or forgiveness, even the existence of God or that of you yourself would have no meaning at all unless…

Christos Anesti!


Pax Christi


PAPA Foundation
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