“Share the Good News” by Colleen O’Sullivan
On the day of Pentecost, Peter said to the Jewish people, “Let the whole house of Israel know for certain that God has made him both Lord and Christ, this Jesus whom you crucified.” (Acts 2:36)
Jesus said to her, “Mary!” She turned and said to him in Hebrew, “Rabbouni,” which means Teacher. Jesus said to her, “Stop holding on to me, for I have not yet ascended to the Father. But go to my brothers and tell them, ‘I am going to my Father and your Father, to my God and your God.’” Mary went and announced to the disciples, “I have seen the Lord,” and then reported what he had told her. (John 20:16-18)
All you need to remember
is how it sounded
when you stood
in the place of death
and heard the living
Call your name.
from The Magdalene’s Blessing for Easter Day, Circle of Grace: A Book of Blessings for the Seasons by Jan Richardson (© Jan Richardson. janrichardson.com)
James Tissot, Mary Magdalene Questions the
Angels in the Tomb, c. 1886-1894, Brooklyn Museum, Public Domain, Wikimedia
As I was pondering today’s Scripture readings, Go, Tell It on the Mountain, kept playing over and over in my head - “Go, tell it on the mountain, over the hills and everywhere, Go tell it on the mountain…” The Resurrection is such good news. We can’t keep it to ourselves! In the Gospel, Mary Magdalene hurries to the tomb early on that first Easter morning, only to discover that Jesus isn’t there. Except for a pair of angels, the tomb is empty. Fresh sorrow fills her heart at the thought that someone has taken her friend’s body. No sooner does she turn away from the angels than she sees a figure she thinks must be the gardener. She begs him to tell her where Jesus’ body is resting if he knows. At that moment, the “gardener” speaks her name, and she recognizes Jesus’ voice! She reaches out for him, and Jesus asks her not to do that but instead to go and tell the others what she has seen. Barely able to contain her joy, she runs to tell the disciples the good news.
Our first reading today describes events on the day of Pentecost. Remember the disciples just weeks before – never fully understanding anything of Jesus’ mission, denying ever knowing him, huddling in a locked room in fear. Here they are seen transformed by the gift of the Holy Spirit! Peter, like Mary Magdalene, feels compelled to share what has happened. He tells the Jews that their crucifying Jesus has been for nothing. Through the Resurrection, God has declared that Jesus is Lord of all and that Jesus is indeed the Christ, God’s anointed one.
Peter invites the crowd to repent and believe, be baptized, and receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. The conviction with which he speaks results in the Baptism of 3,000 or so new believers.
Both readings today are about people bursting with joy over the Lord’s Resurrection and then turning around and promptly sharing the Good News with friends and strangers alike. They can’t keep it to themselves!
When was the
last time you shared the joy of the Resurrection with someone else? Find one person you can sit down with and do
that. Tell him or her what Easter means