Posted by: livingscripture | April 22, 2017

EASTER SATURDAY

 

FRIENDS and SERVANTS of the WORD

April 22, 2017

EASTER SATURDAY – JESUS LIVES!

 

 

WORD of the DAY

When he had risen, early on the first day of the week, he appeared first to Mary Magdalene.  She went and told his companions who were mourning and weeping.  When they heard that he was alive and had been seen by her, they did not believe.  After this he appeared in another form to two of them walking along on their way to the country.  They returned and told the others; but they did not believe them either.

[But] later, as the eleven were at table, he appeared to them and rebuked them for their unbelief and hardness of heart because they had not believed those who saw him after he had been raised.   He said to them, “Go into the whole world and proclaim the gospel to every creature.      (Mark 16: 9-15)

How shall I live this Word?

In today’s Gospel there is a refrain that is repeated and that creates in the reader a certain surprising and unsettling effect.  Mary Magdalene arrives to tell the disciples she had seen the Risen Lord: “They did not believe her”.  The two disciples of Emmaus return and tell them all they had seen and heard along the way and how they had recognized Jesus in the breaking of the bread but “they did not believe them either”.  Finally, Jesus appears to the eleven while they were at table and He scolds them for their incredulity and hardness of heart “because they had not believed those who saw Him after He had been raised”.

It seems Mark wants to show the difficulty in believing in the Resurrection, already in the beginning of the new Church, not only by its adversaries, but also by those who belonged to the closest circle of the apostles friends.  Even the disciple runs the risk of living with unbelief and closed in on self, a slave to one’s own plans and too self-assured.  There are forms of disbelief that can exist even in those who believe.

What is most surprising comes at the conclusion of the Gospel when, in spite of their incredulity, the Lord never rejects or renounces His disciples but His trust in them remains without any after thoughts.  True, they are incredulous and hard of heart, but Jesus entrusts to them the proclamation of His Gospel to every creature!

The Voice of Cardinal Maria Martini, Archbishop of Milan

 I hold that each of us has in ourselves a non-believer and a believer, that speak within, ask each other, have between each other questions that are piercing and disquieting.  The non-believer in me disturbs the believer and vice versa…The clarity and sincerity of such a dialog seem to me symptoms of a human maturity reached.

 

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