Today’s the end of the retreat for sisters at St. Francis Center for Renewal.
My first observation: thank God for these good religious women. Strong believers, they are the best of our church.
During this week we read from the gospel narratives of the Passion, mostly from St. Matthew; it’s evident as you read how involved women were in the Lord’s Passion then. They still are now. Surely, most of what happened there we know from them.
The last few days we read the Resurrection stories from the various gospels, each offering its own perspective. Women figure prominently in that story too. They’re the first at the tomb and they, not angels, carry the message to those shut up in the Upper Room. “The Lord is risen!” they say. They’re the first believers.
We need to read and reflect on these great stories of our faith and be refreshed by them, for they hold what we believe and mirror our present experience. They probe the great mysteries of life.
We read from an article by Fr.Don Senior from Origins on the bodily resurrection of Jesus, which he wrote in response to a TV presentation claiming Jesus’ family tomb had been found with an ossuary containing his bones.
With his usual wide ranging wisdom, Don looks at the implications of Jesus’ bodily resurrection. Rising bodily from the tomb, Jesus embraces both our humanity and all creation. He gives new life to all. His bodily resurrection has implications in the way we care for the world, our view of social justice, our understanding of the sacraments and our own relationship to others and to our own bodies.
Most of my homilies for the retreat are summarized in previous blogs.