Archbishop Jason Gordon urged faithful to spread the message of light through their families and communities at the Easter Vigil Mass at the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception, Saturday, April 8.
He posited that those who loved Jesus the most were at the tomb where He was placed after crucifixion. Mary of Magdala was among the first to experience the Resurrection.
“What does it mean for her, that early time when she is grappling with what is happening? It set her whole life ablaze with the light of Christ. She then becomes the messenger to the apostles”, the Archbishop said. He added that for this reason she is considered the “apostle to the apostles”.
Archbishop Gordon asked the faithful what they were doing to carry the message of light and hope to others. “Are we spreading light to each other and to our families and our neighbours, to all around?” he said, referring to the Service of Light, when the light from the Paschal candle was shared to the congregation.
Jesus, the Archbishop underscored, gave the perfect sacrifice in choosing to freely give Himself. “As He gives everything He has, the light of God simply fills Him up…That is the Resurrection power from God to Him,” Archbishop Gordon said.
He exhorted Catholics not to spend time on the monuments to things past, foolish actions and bad decisions which prevents them from coming out of the tomb and embracing the light of Christ.
“If we are the people of the Resurrection then we know those tombs have no power over us. What we need to do with that is bring it to Confession and release it and know the power of the Resurrection has set us free from that tomb”, he said.
The Archbishop cited the two times the words, “Do not be afraid” were used in Matthew’s gospel, by the angel in the tomb to the women and by Jesus when they encountered Him.
The women fell to their knees and clasped Jesus’ ankles, a gesture of worship. “They understood this man Jesus was not just a great teacher, a prophet, a rabbi, a messiah…they understood there and then in this moment that everything had changed,” he said.
The congregation was instructed to repeat the words, “Do not be afraid.” These words are not only for the women but for all. Believers of the Resurrection have no fear as Christ had conquered the darkness of the tomb and brought light where there was darkness.
Suffering, illness, and character assassination are the worst things that can happen to someone and these and more happened to Jesus; He endured and is alive. “We who are baptised in Christ participate in this life because of the Resurrection”, Archbishop Gordon said.
After the homily, candidate Sean Reid was confirmed. “Sean has made his journey and comes as a baptised person who wants full communion with the Catholic Church” the Archbishop said. The congregation subsequently renewed their baptismal promises.