But Mary stood weeping outside the tomb. As she wept, she bent over to look into the tomb; and she saw two angels in white, sitting where the body of Jesus had been lying, one at the head and the other at the feet.They said to her, “Woman, why are you weeping?” She said to them, “They have taken away my Lord, and I do not know where they have laid him.”
When she had said this, she turned around and saw Jesus standing there, but she did not know that it was Jesus. Jesus said to her, “Woman, why are you weeping? Whom are you looking for?” Supposing him to be the gardener, she said to him, “Sir, if you have carried him away, tell me where you have laid him, and I will take him away.”
Jesus said to her, “Mary!” She turned and said to him in Hebrew, “Rabbouni!” (which means Teacher). Jesus said to her, “Do not hold on to me, because I have not yet ascended to the Father. But go to my brothers and say to them, ‘I am ascending to my Father and your Father, to my God and your God.’” Mary Magdalene went and announced to the disciples, “I have seen the Lord”; and she told them that he had said these things to her.
New Revised Standard Version, copyright 1989, by the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved. USCCB approved.
Easter does not erase the Cross. Easter transforms it.
The Jews who listened to Peter’s preaching on Pentecost learned this firsthand. Peter’s speech ends with an indictment: you crucified Jesus, the Lord and Messiah. Peter does not gloss over this point; if anything, he emphasizes it. The crowd knows what Peter says is true; each knows he or she is not completely innocent. And so, “they were cut to the heart.”
But this is also an Easter proclamation. With the Cross comes the Resurrection, not to replace the Cross, but to turn death into life.
If, like the crowds at Pentecost, we turn back to look at the Cross, we too may be cut to the heart. But if we look with the light of Easter, then in the midst of the shame, confusion, and scandal of the Cross, we may find the seeds of new life.
in your abundant mercy, you died for us.
Fill us with the light of Easter,
that we might live always
according to the pattern of your love.
—William Manaker, S.J.