Wake Up Folks, Easter isn't just a Sunday, it is a season of the Church year.
For seven weeks we celebrate the resurrection of Christ and what that means to us. For fifty days (even longer than the Lent we just passed through, we enter into a new kind of apprenticeship of our journey with our loving Saviour; for in the resurrection stories we learn something new about Jesus.
As Father said at Mass this morning, quoting from Fr. Larry Gillick SJ (of Creighton University ) The risen Christ plays a game of Now you see me, Now you see me in a new way in the stories we hear during the Easter season. Each new encounter draws us deeper into the mystery that is our union and communion with Him in faith and belief. We become so enamoured of the Good News that we cannot keep it to ourselves; like the disciples on the road to Emmaus, who after their encounter with the Risen Lord ran all the way back to Jerusalem to report the Good News to the others with the phrase "Were not our hearts burning within us?" (Luke 24: 5-34)
Or like the Apostles at Pentecost, we are so emboldened by the Holy Spirit that we cannot keep silence, and are called out of our hide-away to preach what we know to be true to the crowds, some of whom I am sure weren't receptive to the message. (Acts 2)
And also like our friend Steven the first martyr for the faith. Steven teaches us that we must be bold enough too stand up for the truth, and our faith even in the face of the most crushing contempt and unbelief. We must be willing to do so even if it means doing so at our very own peril. (Acts 7)
So my dear children, enter into this season of Easter with Joy and thanksgiving. Allow yourself to seek the Lord where he may be found and draw strength from Him while He is still near. Grow strong and bold in your faith, because I can tell you that dark days are ahead when even your own brothers and sisters will reject you because of your faith in Christ.
Do not be swayed, stand up for the truth and be bold in proclaiming in loudly. You have a right in this country to the free expression of your religious faith. Use that right.