We are just two days from the beginning of our Lord’s Passion. In preparation for Easter, Sr. Marie Notre Dame L’Esperance, SSVM, UWM Alumnae (‘18), wrote for us a reflection on gratitude and joy in relation to Easter.
G.K. Chesterton says that joy is “the gigantic secret of the Christian”. But if we, as Christians, are called to follow in the example of Jesus Christ, who suffered so much and died on the Cross, how can we justify being joyful? Authentic joy presupposes something that makes us joyful – where, then, do we find our joy? It is in the mystery of Easter. At Easter we rejoice in the Resurrection of Christ, because his triumph is our triumph. It is the triumph of truth over lies, of good over evil, beauty over ugliness, love over hate, life over death, grace over sin… Our joy is so great, and our love for Jesus is so intense, that we celebrate the Resurrection not only during the Easter festivities, but also on every Sunday of the year by our participation in the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass – just as Jesus commanded at the Last Supper. Through our participation at Mass we commemorate the sacrifice of the Cross, through which the triumph of the Resurrection came about. How can we help but feel immense gratitude when we consider how Jesus suffered for us? By the grace of his Sacrifice we are granted eternal life! Are we content with gratitude, or do we seek to truly love Jesus with real, sacrificial love?