This year, in the General Curia, Holy Week was once again celebrated in the House. Most of us were not able to be present with other communities as in previous years. The Superior of the House, Fr. Giuseppe Carulli, was able to accompany a community of the Daughters of Charity in Albania during the Triduum.
Although the celebrations were simple, there was a climate of much prayer where the center was the Passion, Death and Resurrection of Jesus and the prayer for the entire Congregation, in a special way for the confreres affected by COVID.
We share with you the Homily for Easter Sunday.
Happy Easter!

Reflection on the readings for Easter Sunday.

Acts 10:34a, 37-43; Col 3:1-4; Jn 20:1-9.

I love Peter’s announcement about Jesus of Nazareth, the Man who passed through the earth “doing good” and “healing all those oppressed by the devil.” Why? Because God was with him. A beautiful summary of what we celebrate today: the Father has shown how much he loves his Son and that he was never far from him. If God is with you, who can be against you? Because of his closeness to God, Jesus had attained LIFE before he died. Life never abandoned Jesus at any time. And he was aware of it. He affirmed the ” living water ” to the Samaritan woman. Water united with the Spirit of Life for Nicodemus to be reborn. He lives for the Father and so he announces it: I am the resurrection and the life…

The disciples found it hard to believe that Jesus is Life himself. Perhaps it is because of the many moments of darkness that cross life: suffering, pain, death, uncertainty, loneliness, emptiness, opposition… these are signs that overwhelm us, that push us into the “dark night” of faith. This is how we have experienced this year of sickness, isolation and death. Like the converted disciple of Magdala and the other disciples we ask ourselves: “They have taken the Lord from the tomb and we do not know where they have laid him.” We have a very materialistic faith. Like John, and other disciples, we need to see the empty tomb, the burial cloths, to believe that “he is risen” as he said. Today we have seen them and believed. Especially those who, like Mary and John, seek Jesus because they love Him. The disciple needs to believe deeply in life, to love the Risen One, because he is called to be a “witness”. We preach to the poor what we have seen and heard, and even more, we preach the love that we have experienced and which gives meaning to our life. We preach as one who responds to the love he has received. Contemplating the Risen One, we too, disciples of the Lord, are already in possession of Life. A faithful disciple is the one who has been able to bet on this Life that has reached him long before his resurrection.

But if we still walk in the dark night, with Christ our love and our hope must be reborn. New life awaits us on the path of the integral following of the life of Jesus Christ. I was once asked the question: What would become of our faith if, instead of the empty tomb, we found the body of the crucified One? I think nothing, I said. It seems Jesus doesn’t care what happens to his biological life. What really interests him is the LIFE with a capital L that he attained during his life, with a small letter. St. Vincent invites us to live something of this, because this is what we have to be witnesses of when we announce the good news to the poor. Never have his words been more timely than today: “Remember, Monsieur, we live in Jesus Christ through the death of Jesus Christ, and we must die in Jesus Christ through the life of Jesus Christ, and our life must be hidden in Jesus Christ and filed with Jesus Christ, and in order to die as Jesus Christ, we must live as Jesus Christ. “(CCD I:276) How similar these words are to those of Paul: “For you have died, and your life is hidden with Christ in God. When Christ your life appears, then you too will appear with him in glory.”

If God is with us as he was with Jesus, what a joy! Let us reject the dark night of a religion that compelled the disciples “to postpone their search for Jesus”, under the pretext that God keeps the Sabbath and rests. The search for life must never be postponed… we must hasten the tension in which circumstances keep us to meet the Risen One. In keeping the law, let us not wait for the early hour of Sunday to seek the Beloved. He is already waiting for us. Something has to move us to look for him permanently.

Forgive us, Lord, when we do not know what to do with the “dark night”. Listen to me well, I would rather see you dead than missing; I would rather see you lying there with all your torments, than ignored; I would rather see you slaughtered for the utopia of the Kingdom, than indifferent. I have learned this from so many families who, because of COVID, did not have the opportunity to see their loved one for the last time. Their reactions have taught me what a heart that refuses the disappearance of the loved one is capable of.

“Etsi Deus non daretur” [Even if God did not exist] … in the dark night give me, O Lord, a heart in love. Even if you had not risen, even if you had disappeared, even if they deny your commitment to the Kingdom, I need you alive, Father-Brother-Friend-Companion, Redeemer and Liberator… I need you alive because I myself want to live knowing you will never be among the dead, because you lead us to your Kingdom that is Life. “I beg Our Lord,Saint Vincent praysthat we may be able to die to ourselves in order to rise with Him, that He may be the joy ofyour heart, the end and soul of your actions, and your glory in heaven. This will come to pass if, from now on, we humble ourselves as He humbled Himself, if we renounce our own satisfaction to follow Him by carrying our little crosses, and if we give our lives willingly, as He gave His, for our neighbor whom He loves so much and whom He wants US to love as ourselves. (CCD III:616) Amen

Fr. Aarón Gutiérrez Nava, C.M.