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03/26/16 Easter Vigil Homily - Fr. Reggie

This is the most blessed and most joyful night of the year as we celebrate Jesus’ resurrection. We are so accustomed to hearing of Jesus risen from the dead that we could say “Oh yea…we know all about it” and miss the grace of entering fully into this celebration, but think about it, Jesus rose from the dead! Death is not the end. It is only the door to beyond. Let us not allow the resurrection of Jesus to have to fight for room in our lives, let Jesus’ death and resurrection be the center of our lives. We began our celebration tonight with a service of light, which symbolized Jesus rising from the dead, and bringing light to all of us. The light of Christ has shone in the world scattering darkness forever. We had been waiting for this moment for thousands of years. We heard in the readings tonight an account of the creation of man and woman (first reading) and the liberation of the Hebrews from Egypt (third reading). This was in God’s plan for mankind, but the highpoint in God’s plan for us was the resurrection. This is the greatest celebration of the Church. This night is the most blessed of all as we heard in the Exultet, the Easter Proclamation. Jesus’ resurrection reminds us that there is life beyond the grave. Jesus’ resurrection reminds us that there is more to each of us than meets the eye, that we have an immortal soul. Although our body will return to dust, our soul will live forever with God.

What is the purpose of life? What is your goal in life? Where is your heart in life? Life has only one ultimate goal, to prepare for the next life, and if you are not preparing for your own resurrection you are like a train that has become derailed. What happens to a train that gets derailed? It goes nowhere. Can you take your house to heaven with you? Then why make such a fuss about your house? Can you take your car to heaven with you? Well then, why become so engrossed in your car? Can you take your bank account to heaven with you? Use your money for the spread of the Gospel. Why are you so busy that you have no time to pray to God every day? It is God you want to meet in the next life, isn’t it? I cannot understand anyone who says they believe in God but do not pray every day. It is a contradiction to say that you believe in God if you do not pray.

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