At Easter we celebrate, in the person of Jesus, the victory of life over death. On Good Friday all seemed lost but on Easter day we celebrate because the Lord is risen from the dead.
Signs of Easter – of the victory of life over death – can be seen in the lives of Christians who strive to live as Jesus taught. They can also be seen in the lives of all people of good will, in the efforts made by so many to be caring of the vulnerable, to seek justice, to esteem the truth, to protect the environment, to build peace, to bring about a fairer world. The feast of Easter says all that effort is worthwhile because all of that is life giving.
But one can understand if somebody protests and says that good is not stronger than evil, that the force of death and destruction is there for all to see. Examples that justify this viewpoint might be the horrendous tragedies perpetrated in Syria, the hunger and starvation of people in many developing countries, the wanton acts of violence in places like London and Stockholm in recent weeks, the homelessness of so many and the suffering of refugees. What can an Easter person say in the context of so much pain and destruction?
In the first instance an Easter person would say that such scenarios as outlined in the previous paragraph are totally unacceptable in any human context and most certainly unacceptable in the perspective of Christian faith. And an Easter person would commit her/himself to eliminating such things from human experience. This, of course, is a very challenging mission but it is the mission for those who believe in the risen Lord.
It is beyond the reach of most of us to implement a quick solution for the situation in Syria or to solve the problem of hunger in the world. But that does not mean that we are helpless or hopeless.
Every gesture, no matter how modest and unheralded, that seeks to bring about a fairer, more just world is worthwhile and is of value. It may be support for the Trócaire campaign, it may be taking time out to visit the lonely or the vulnerable, it may be an act of solidarity with the homeless, it may be protesting against the use of violence.
For a person of faith the resurrection of the Lord validates all these gestures and acts of goodness. Our God is the God of life and everything that enhances life is to be cherished and appreciated.
This day was made by the Lord, we rejoice and are glad.