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Victor H. Vallejo is the Marriage Programs Coordinator of the Office of Lifelong Formation.

Monday, May 05, 2014

Jesus rises victorious over death and appears to his own

To be a witness to Christ is to be a “witness to his Resurrection,” (Acts 1, 22; cf. 4, 33), to “[have eaten and drunk] with him after he rose from the dead” (Acts 10, 41). Encounters with the risen Christ characterize the Christian hope of resurrection. We shall rise like Christ, with him, and through him.
-Catechism of the Catholic Church, par. 995

I was glad to have participated in the Easter Triduum and would like to reflect on the Resurrection of the Lord, which is such a powerful and transformative event. Not only because at that moment, we have been freed from the bondage of sin, but because when He overcame death, He showed us that through Him, there is eternal life – our intended final destination.

In scripture, we know that the glorified Christ ate and drank with the first witnesses of the resurrection. However, without biblical basis, I like to think that His mother, the Virgin Mary, also had the opportunity to eat, drink and speak with her only son. Mary, once again, was able to reflect on the life of the son whom she loved unconditionally. She was not thinking of the Jesus who was humiliated and condemned by the whole world. Rather, as the Jesus who was the conqueror of death, the liberator and Lord. I imagine Jesus explained to Mary how the scriptures were fulfilled with His death and resurrection, as he did with the disciples at Emmaus. Undoubtedly, her questions at the time of His death and resurrection were then answered. Maybe during this reunion, Mary prepared Jesus’ favorite dish, listened to and spoke with her son for a while. Perhaps their conversation was full of joy, hope, love and tenderness, like those they had previously shared between them. We now have a great opportunity to encounter the living Christ and to participate in the banquet of salvation: the Eucharist. Let us be witnesses to the one who LIVES.

May is the month in which we honor our mothers. Let us give thanks to our Lord for giving us all a biological mother, as well as our beloved Mother Mary. Both sacrificed their lives. Both gave their unconditional love, attention, tenderness and understanding to their children. In this spirit, we invite all mothers and expectant mothers to receive a special blessing during the following Masses on Sunday, May 11:

  • Holy Name Cathedral, State and Superior Streets, at 12:30 p.m. with Cardinal Francis George (English).
  • St. Joseph Parish, 4821 South Hermitage Avenue in Chicago, at 12:30 p.m. with Bishop Alberto Rojas (Spanish).

 "Have you come to believe because you have seen me? Blessed are those who have not seen and have believed." (John 20: 29)  

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