Many years ago, the late +Fr. Bernie Hayes, CR wrote a booklet reflecting on the words of our Resurrection Prayer. During this Easter Season of the Lord’s Resurrection we wanted to share some excerpts from those reflections with you.
O Risen Lord,
the way, the truth and the life,
make us faithful followers
of the spirit of your Resurrection.
Grant that we may be inwardly renewed:
dying to ourselves
in order that you may live in us.
May our lives serve
as signs of the transforming power of your love.
Use us as your instruments
for the renewal of society,
bringing your life and love to all,
and leading them to your Church.
This we ask of you, Lord Jesus,
living and reigning with the Father,
in the unity of the Holy Spirit, God forever.
"Of the Spirit of your Resurrection"
What is the “spirit” of the resurrection – and therefor of the Resurrectionist?
The first thing that comes to my mind is joy. A peaceful, serene sense of joy. A joy that lasts. One that is felt deep within one’s being; that faces life squarely; one, which while occasionally dampened by life, is never dispirited, never extinguished.
My best metaphor for this joy is the ocean. The ocean may become very rough and disturbed on the surface. But if one goes deeper one finds that even then the ocean is calm and tranquil in its depths. Resurrection joy is that kind of joy: deep, serene, peaceful in its depth.
Jesus’ resurrection was not without turmoil. Mary Magdalene; the Emmaus disciples; the Twelve all experienced turmoil. Yet their joy at seeing the risen Christ – speaking with him; listening to him; sharing “Eucharist” with him – that joy enabled them to overcome their despair and disillusionment; their fear and “lostness”. I think there is a great lesson here along with a lot of hope and consolation.
The joy of the Resurrection is a powerful, triumphant joy. It trumpets the triumph of love over death; physical, emotional, spiritual. It brings redemption to a seemingly hopeless world. In its power it can bring order out of chaos; wholeness to brokenness; hope to despair; healing to pain.
“He is Risen!” wonderful words; miraculous words. What an awesome and wonder-filled privilege and responsibility we resurrectionists have: to bring those words to life in ourselves and in others.
May the Lord give each of us the grace, wisdom and perseverance to do just that.