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Mary Magdalene went and announced to the disciples, “I have seen the Lord.” ~ John 20:18

This is the final reflection on this journey, and I want to end by saying what a privilege it has been to accompany you along the way during this season of Lent. Having walked through these forty days together, let us now share in Easter joy.

Each Gospel has a different account of the moment the disciples discover Jesus’ empty tomb. In reading the four accounts this year, I was struck by the way angels appear in the texts. In John 20, two angels dressed in white sit where Jesus had been lying. In Mark 16, an angel appears as a young man, dressed in a white robe, sitting on the right side of the interior of the tomb. In Matthew, the earth trembles as an angel descends from heaven to roll back the stone and sit on top of it. And in Luke 24, two angels assure the women who have come to Jesus’ tomb that Jesus is alive.

Sometimes the angels bring words of reassurance. In other stories, they simply state that Jesus has been raised. And in one instance, the angels are confused as to why Mary Magdalene is crying. Doesn’t she know? Christ is alive and has been raised from the dead.

As we come to the end of this season, I am reassured by the physical placement of these angels. The Gospels tell us that these messengers are seated on top of, beside or just inside death’s tomb. They have come to announce a new reality, and I wonder if we, as Christians, aren’t called to join these angels in doing the same. Fearfully, tremblingly, very imperfectly, we are called to sit in places of darkness and terror and proclaim that death has no victory here.

Today’s readings

Alleluia. Alleluia. Alleluia.

Christ has risen indeed.

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