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Liturgy

Easter Monday

The great feast of Our Lord’s resurrection has come and gone, and we are now able to bask in the happy afterglow that is called “the Easter Octave” and then “the Easter season.” Today I would like to ask you to think and pray with me about the meeting between Our Lord Jesus and his Blessed Mother when he rose from the dead. The four gospel accounts of the resurrection, each giving its own details but all affirming the return of Jesus to life after his death on the cross, speak of the various persons who saw Our Lord on that first day of the Jewish week, which we call Sunday. Our risen Lord appeared to several women who came to complete what they considered the proper preparation of the body of their Lord for death; then he appeared to Saints Peter and John, two of the disciples that afternoon on the road to Emmaus, and then that night, to the apostles assembled in the upper room in Jerusalem.

But you notice: nothing is said about our Lord’s appearance to his Mother to share with her the tremendous joy of his resurrection. Why? Because that was a private moment, one which was not witnessed by anyone else, and which is therefore not recounted in any of the gospels. But from the earliest days of Christian mysticism, our saints have been quite sure that the first one to know that Jesus had risen was the same one who was first in her knowledge of the moment of his becoming a human being, the only one to feel the stirring of that divine child in her womb, the only one to feed that literally adorable infant nursing at her breast, the only one whom he called “mother” when he was a child and whom he obeyed as any virtuous child obeys his or her mother.

What was the moment like when the risen Jesus appeared to Our Lady early on that first Easter Sunday? I would not even venture to imagine. It is too private, too personal, too joyous for us even to guess at. Were there words? Or was it simply a time of unspoken happiness now that all the horror of Calvary was over and the happiness of new life was without measure. I leave it to your meditations, your prayers, to unite yourself with the risen Christ and his mother, Our Lady of Joy.

By V. Brown

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