Easter: New Astonishment, New Understanding!

Easter: New Astonishment, New Understanding!

The Benedictine Sisters chapel in Rock Island IL during the Easter vigil is filled with flowers and joy

By Sister Catherine Cleary, OSB

Easter Sunday at our home always meant we celebrated Eucharist together (or, as we said back then, “We went to Mass”).

What was special to us was that each of the 10 of us had something new to wear.

I especially remember a new yellow suit, which I loved. One Easter I had a new pink purse, another, a new ribbon for last year’s straw hat.  Whether a whole new outfit or just an accessory, we all had something new.

The point my parents made was, “You have fasted, prayed, performed kind deeds; you are a new person, like Jesus you have risen!” The new clothes exemplified that newness.

Then, of course, there were new baskets filled with Easter candy.

For this kind of parenting and Christian teaching I nominate my parents for the BEST PARENTS AWARD!

So today, we have spent the last 40 days fasting, praying and alms giving. We, too, are “new people.”

We are ready with a renewed faith and hope and love to join the followers of Jesus as he rose from the dead.

Reading and praying the “appearance Scriptures,” we find Jesus’ appearances left those who saw him filled with awe, with new hope and new life .

“Were not our hearts burning within us; while he spoke to us on the way and opened the Scriptures to us?”(Luke 24:32)

So just as the day when the Risen Jesus appeared to Peter, Jesus is always simply here. We have but to recognize him with new astonishment, new understanding.

Perhaps, then, like St. Peter we will exclaim with a renewed and deeper love, “It is the Lord!” (John 21:7).

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