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Easter Vigil, Year B (Fr Joe Caddy)

The women in the gospel confront an empty tomb a giant boulder has been rolled away—where there should be death there is life and THIS great event IS earth shattering it DOES establish a new world order.

We pick up the story as the women are on their way to anoint the dead body of their friend- they are anxious about who will be around to roll back that huge stone sealing the tomb. But when they get there the stone has been moved.

They enter the tomb and see no sign of the death and corruption that should have awaited them; instead a young man in white tells them not to be alarmed—Jesus who was crucified—He is risen—he is not here! He has gone to Galilee: you will see him! This is a new world order.

This same Jesus who we placed in a tomb- who died such a horrible and unjust death because of the treachery and betrayal of his friends; because of the misuse of power by the strong over the weak; because of a system of justice that gave no justice to the poor man and the powerless; who died because of the jealousy and resentment of petty church officials who were affronted by Jesus invitation to the poor and to sinners to relate directly to God as their father; this same Jesus has returned amongst us.

This young man at the tomb talks nothing of reprisals; there is no call to arms to get fitting revenge on those who murdered Jesus; not even a word of condemnation for his so called friends—not even a bit of righteous indignation—no instead it is—don’t be alarmed he is risen- go and tell his friends so that they can go and see him in Galilee just as Jesus had told them.

This is indeed a new earth—the ways of the world treachery, betrayal, sinfulness, cowardice, resentment, selfishness, jealousy and revenge have no power. This earth changing event has rendered them powerless.

The innocent victim will no longer be despatched; the murdered will not stay in their tombs; the poor and the weak will not be dismissed; the powerless will not remain in their place of oppression.

The Good Friday voices of the homeless, the asylum seeker, victims of violence those who are ill in mind and body and soul—Those Good Friday voices will be heard!

The way of God is indeed a new world order: darkness, death, hatred and revenge—stand aside! Give way to light, life, love, mercy and forgiveness.

Joe Caddy


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