1986 March 30 – Easter (Bulletin Letters)
March 28, 1986
Phoenix is not just the name of a city in Arizona. It is also the name of a mythical bird, which according to legend lived 500 years, burned itself to ashes on a pyre and rose youthfully from the ashes to live another period of years. The Phoenix is a good image for Easter. Spring is also a good image for Easter. It won’t be long before the colors of our rural landscape will change from a multitude of browns to a multitude of greens and the dormant death of winter will give way to the vibrant life of spring.
Good Friday is the experience of human death, sinfulness at its fullest in the immediate. Easter is the experience of divine life, grace at its fullest in the transcended. A world bound by the Good Friday experience is a dead end, a world with no meaning, no future and no hope. A world embraced by the Easter experience is open to new life and a future of unlimited possibilities. In the here and now both realities preside, Good Friday and Easter, Life and Death. Lifeless matter and limitless spirit indistinguishable except for one ingredient – LOVE. Not an abstract love or ideal love, but a concrete love of one person for another. It is a personal love that knows how to forgive, how to sacrifice and how to give of self. The mystery of this kind of loving experience is that the self is not negated, but brought to its fullness in the loving.
Easter is believable to the extent that we have been touched by this kind of love. Easter is believable to the extent that we can pass on this kind of love to one another.