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The Resurrection of Jesus 2009

The Resurrection of Jesus is nor a past event. It happens in our own Community all the time. Jesus is working among us, from one year to the next, transforming each of us, and transforming our Parish. We should experience the Resurrection of Jesus, as we see our selves change, and as we see our Parish change. For we are asked to change ourselves, and we are asked to change our Parish Community, so that Jesus can be seen working among us in a new age, and in a new culture. We are called to adopt ourselves and our Parish in changing times, and it is only when we can see that change taking place among us that young people, and not so young, can believe that Jesus is raised and lives amongst us. If we do not change ourselves, and change our Parishes, our people will begin to believe that Jesus is still in the tomb, or is no more.

The Risen Jesus who is not seen or experienced to be working amongst us is irrelevant to a new generation. This is why we talk so much about people becoming involved in Parish life, and taking ownership of their own Parish. Jesus draws our young generation to himself in a parish that is alive, active, and changing to meet the challenges of the modern world. He draws young people to himself also in a parish in which they feel wanted and loved; and in a Parish in which they are welcome to be involved. They are not impressed by a passive church, or an unenthusiastic Community of Faith. The reason is very simple: In an unenthusiastic community of Faith in which people are not actively involved they cannot see the Risen Jesus at work, and they cannot see the five wounds of victory for which they are searching with open hearts. So we thank God tonight for all those leaders in our community who work hard to involve all of us in our Parish. We thank God tonight for all those who are reading the signs of the times, and are becoming more involved in Parish life all the time... The Holy Spirit who comes from the Risen Jesus is working in our community, and we filled with gratitude when we see, and experience this work of the Risen Jesus amongst us.

We live in a world in which the presence of God is often ignored. We can easily get the impression from modern culture that he is irrelevant, despite the fact that without him we have created a society in which there has never been so much emotional and mental suffering. It has yet to dawn on our world that without God and Prayer we are an empty people for there is a spiritual dimension to our nature that we ignore to our peril. For if we ignore the spiritual dimension of our nature, it will break out in us like a rash on our skin, causing much pain and suffering.

Some aspects of the modern media often help to create a closed universe in which God and Prayer is excluded. The spiritual world, which deals with the great questions of life and death are often sidelined, or given marginal or cynical treatment. This is why we as individuals, and as a Community must work together to make Jesus known, and encountered among us through creating a Parish where all are welcomed and valued, and where all be long, and none are excluded. We must create a Parish in which the “Table of the Eucharist” is central, and in which the totality of our lives flows from it and flows to it. We must create a Parish in which people can authentically say: I have seen the Lord; He is truly Risen. Alleluia, alleluia.

(John Halton Rev.)

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