The forty days of Lent finally culminates in the celebration of Easter, our Lord Jesus’ victory over sin and death. This great paschal mystery, Jesus’ passing from death into life, is ever ancient, yet ever new. It is ancient because the holy Church of God continuously commemorates it ever since that very “first day of the week” in which the women and the other disciples of Jesus discovered his tomb to be empty. As if this was not enough, Jesus appeared in person to his disciples on that first day as testament of his triumphant resurrection. This paschal mystery is also ever new because every time we celebrate the Eucharist, we relive the one perfect sacrifice of Jesus on the cross in real time. Each day we are invited and are blessed to offer our lives as an acceptable gift to God through Jesus Christ on the altar and on the cross.
Although this is the second Easter celebration for us in the midst of a global health pandemic, I still experience it anew. I have seen firsthand the suffering and agony that many of our parishioners endure. But I have also witnessed how, when facing serious illness and imminent death, they are able to respond with grace, courage and even joy. Thus, the words of St. Paul ring true, “Where, O death, is your victory? Where, O death, is your sting?” (1 Cor 15:55)
There is a reason why the Easter season coincides with spring. It signifies new life in faith and in creation. Parish life is slowly getting back to normal, but my prayer—and I hope it is also yours—is that we should not be content with returning to normal life. We should strive for unimaginable growth and joy, and sing to the new life given to us in Christ Jesus.
Fr. Binh, Fr. William, Fr. Aaron, and Parish Staff