Praised be Jesus Christ! “A man and his five-year old son were driving past a cemetery and noticed a large pile of dirt next to a freshly dug grave when the little boy exclaimed, ‘Look, Dad, one got out!’” Yes, that’s exactly what we celebrate on Easter, the fact that one literally walked away from the grave never to return there again. Jesus prophesied that He had power to both lay down His life and take it up again, and we praise Him today that He fulfilled all that He said He would do to save our souls. Easter is the annual reminder that no one goes to Heaven except by the sacrificial death and glorious resurrection of Jesus Christ. God knows we forget this or take it for granted more often than we care to admit. But we can be happy today because death is not the end of our story. For all of you grieving the death of a loved one, this does console, even if the hurt takes a long time to heal. Easter reminds us that Christians grieve, but not like the rest insofar as we have in Christ the hope of eternal life. We pray today for all who will be making their final journey on this planet around the sun, that God will give them the grace of perseverance in their faith and humble contrition for their sins. While we never know the day or the hour, it’s enough to know that every year marks a closer approach to the day God will call us home. Easter helps us to think more about Heaven and that affects the way we spend our limited time on earth. A month ago I watched a very disappointing movie about people who only lived for the here and now. When Heaven is denied, all that is left is to get rich or die trying (which, by the way, is the name of a rap album from some years back). People who do not believe in Heaven tend to desperately attempt to reproduce it here. But here we have no lasting city, and most of the things we covet are vulnerable to rust or robbers. Heaven, on the other hand, gives hope to those who suffer, especially those who are poor, addicted, and otherwise considered hopeless. Jesus promised that the last shall be first, and this is such an encouragement for people who have known more than their share of suffering and loneliness. The saints were absolutely focused on gaining Heaven, which freed their hearts of the usual anxieties that weigh so many of us down. For example, Saint Philip Neri was offered the scarlet red of being named a Cardinal of the Catholic Church; he declined such an honor and said what he really wanted was a place with God in Heaven. The adage that has helped many attain such perspective claims that, “blessed is the one who gives what he cannot keep so as to gain what he cannot lose.” Easter ought to fill us with joy because it shows how God saves His best for last. For those who believe in Heaven, the time on earth is better because we no longer are driven by our tendency to horde and control. People convinced of Heaven hold everything with a light grip because these things are fleeting and must be left behind when God comes to take us home. Though we’re inclined toward the darkness at times (for example, people who read Dante’s The Divine Comedy usually read the Inferno and not the Paradiso), Easter is a clarion call from God to set our sights on His Kingdom which will never end. The little boy at the beginning of this article was more correct than he knew when he thought one dead person had managed to escape the confines of the cemetery. Twenty centuries ago that is precisely what happened. And because Jesus’ love proved to be stronger than both sin and death, His invitation to spend eternity with Him in Heaven is real. In Jesus, God the Father proved His love for us. The point of our limited time in this world is to receive and reciprocate that love. Our parishes offer the Mass faithfully so that more and more people will choose God. Easter definitively proves that He chose us.
May God bless you and your family with the joy of His Son’s victory over sin and death!
Your friend in Christ, Father Martin
Tuesday - Friday: 8:00 AM
Saturday: 4:00 PM
Sunday: 8:00 AM & 10:00 AM
Saturday: 3:15 - 3:45 PM
Monday - Thursday: 8:30 AM – 5:00 PM
Friday: 8:30 AM – 12:30 PM
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Welcome from Our Pastor
Welcome to Christ the King Catholic Church! Ever since 1938 this parish has been assisting souls in their quest for deeper union with God. Our mission statement is essentially found in the stained glass window above the main altar: “For Christ our King.” Insofar as God made us and we belong to Him, we have come to... Read More