FRIENDS and SERVANTS of the WORD
April 3, 2021
HOLY SATURDAY EASTER VIGIL
WORD of the DAY
When the Sabbath was over, Mary Magdalene, Mary, the mother of James, and Salome bought spices so that they might go and anoint him. Very early when the sun had risen, on the first day of the week, they came to the tomb. They were saying to one another, “Who will roll back the stone for us from the entrance to the tomb?” When they looked up, they saw that the stone had been rolled back; it was very large. (Mark 16: 1-4)
How shall I live this Word?
The Gospels tell us nothing about that Sabbath in which everything seems to have only one word: end, silence. The day of Saturday was probably spent in hiding in fear of being arrested, in silence, in tears, in the memory of what had tumultuously happened. They were together with Mary, the Mother, who consoled them and herself. But as soon as the dawn light comes, the women want to go and anoint the corpse of Jesus since they hadn’t been able to do it before. They go to the tomb because they are convinced that He was the King awaited for centuries and even if He failed, He was a Messianic King and as such they felt the need to offer a royal tribute: to anoint His body. Their heart continues as they approaches the tomb, to be sad and full of thoughts, and a very concrete one: “Who will roll the stone from the tomb for us?” This heavy stone that we also find above many of our thoughts, concerns. That heavy stone that bends us towards the ground and does not allow us to look up. A heavy stone and fragile women, however, supported by a ‘strong’ memory and affection that illuminates their thoughts. Looking up, here is the first sign that something strange has happened. They looked up! This is what we need to be able to do in order to meet the Risen Lord!
Do not be afraid!!
The Voice of Pope Francis, Easter 20 April 2019
The women bring the perfumes to the tomb, but fear that the journey will be useless, because a large stone blocks the entrance to the tomb. The path of those women is also our path … At first it seems that everything is going to crash against a stone. Today, however, we discover that our path is not in vain, that it does not hit a tombstone… Tonight each one is called to find in the Living One He who removes the heaviest stones from the heart. Let us first ask ourselves: what is my stone to remove, what is this stone called?”
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