After the Sabbath, as the first day of the week was dawning, Mary Magdalene and the other Mary came to see the tomb…"Do not be afraid! I know that you are seeking Jesus the crucified. He is not here, for he has been raised just as he said. Come and see the place where he lay… Then Jesus said to them, "Do not be afraid. Go tell my brothers to go to Galilee, and there they will see me." (Mt 28, 1-10)
Today the Church keeps a vigil. It is a Mother of all vigils. It is like the vigil of the Israelites, in Egypt, 4000 years ago.
Vigil is a time of expectation. It is a time of watching. It is a time of hope. The Israelites waited for the Lord to come and release them from bondage. They waited the whole night. The escape was at night when the Egyptians were all asleep (they were not waiting for the Lord). Those who kept vigil moved with the Lord.
It is a time of new creation. Israelites were formed into one nation. They come out as one nation with belief in one God. And the Liturgy of the day also gives the symbols of creation. The fire is blessed first (at creation, God said let there be light at first) then there is water which is blessed (there was water all over at creation; the Israelites were redeemed through the water of Red sea). It is a reminder of the water of Baptism where in the person is re-born in Christ.
The WORD of god is read while people are keeping vigil.(The Word that was there at creation; then with Abraham and then at Exodus and through prophets until the time of Jesus). It is a reminder that the WORD was there always from the beginning with the people guiding them, leading them etc. This word of God is alive in the person of Jesus.
Today’s gospel story speaks about the resurrection of Jesus. He is the first fruit. He is the model of resurrection. The whole world keeps vigil for this. It awaits the resurrection of the Lord. We believe in the resurrection (if Jesus is not risen then our faith is in vain 1 Cor 15,17); resurrection is our hope (we will all be resurrected by God 1 Cor 15, 19); and we proclaim this resurrection (1 Cor 15,3)
We believe in the resurrection
We hope in the resurrection
We proclaim the resurrection
Alleluia Alleluia Alleluia