Dear Brothers and Sisters In Christ,
Alleluia! The Lord is risen! Indeed, he is risen!
In one of his Easter homilies, St. Augustine said and I quote: “And He departed from our sight that we might return to our heart, and there find Him. For He departed, and behold, He is here.”
Christ is risen! And He is here with us–in our hearts, in our midst, in the people we meet everyday, in the Word, in the breaking of the bread, in the ministers of the Church, and in the vastness of God’s created world! And even here at Mount Tapochao!
The liturgies this past week from the Palm Sunday of the Lord’s Passion, Chrism Mass, Holy Thursday, Good Friday, Easter Vigil speak of the core of our faith which is the passion, death, and resurrection. The dying and rising of our Savior speaks of our own ‘dyings’ and ‘risings’ in life. He is here with us. He is alive!
Jesus’ anguished cry of abandonment on the cross becomes for us God’s promise that there is no suffering that we need bear by ourselves, no pain so deep that Christ has not been there first. God’s love has triumphed and will triumph over all that is evil and even over death itself. Christ’s Resurrection means that the offer of new and eternal life is open for all of us and that nothing will separate us from the love of God. As St Paul puts it in his letter to the Romans:“neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor present things, nor future things, nor powers, nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord.”(Romans 8:38-39) He is here with us.
The passion, death, and Resurrection of His Son, Jesus Christ, is God’s ultimate gift of love for us. How should we respond to this gift? Gratitude. A response of gratitude strong enough to make us translate our love of God into love of all of God’s people.
As your bishop for two years and eight months, I am deeply grateful to all of you in the Diocese of Chalan Kanoa, to my brother priests and deacons, religious sisters, catechists, diocesan staff, those in different ministries in our parishes. Thank you for your cooperation and for your support in our second year of implementation of our Pastoral Plan.
Thank you. Si Yu’us Ma’ase.
Happy Easter to all, Felis Pasguan Resureksion.
Yours in the Risen Christ,
+Ryan P. Jimenez
Bishop of Chalan Kanoa