The Light of the World
Fr. Morgan V. Rice, CSB
During my first years in Rochester, I needed to replace the car I had been driving. Some parishioners recommended that whatever car I purchased to make sure it had a sunroof. They said that I would want to absorb as much light as possible, especially in the grey days of the long winter. How true! Light can have a significant effect on our emotional and physical well-being. The same can be said about our spiritual well-being when we consider the Light of the World, Jesus Christ, whose resurrection we celebrate in a special way this weekend. Jesus give us light and life to counter darkness, death, and all its manifestations. This is demonstrated in a magnificent way during the Easter Vigil on Holy Saturday night when the Paschal Candle, representing Christ, is first lit from the Easter fire. It is then brought into the dark church and announced as “the Light of Christ”. Some of the darkness disappears. However, when that light is spread by using it to light the candles of each person in the church, the darkness disappears with the church aglow with warm light. Through the power of the Holy Spirit at our Baptism, we have received the light of Christ and been invited to share in his mission of bringing light to those who suffer due to the darkness of their lives. As Jesus described at the beginning of his public ministry, that involves bringing good news to the poor, sight to the blind, and freedom to the oppressed (Luke 4.18). While each of us do this individually by sharing Christ with others, we see even more powerful results when we join together as the Body of Christ to bring Jesus’ healing, compassion, freedom, life, and peace to others. As we celebrate the fifty days of Easter, may the presence of Christ in each of us enhance the well-being of everyone we encounter due to their exposure to the Light. Happy Easter!