Mission Society of the Philippines

Easter Message 2020

by Fr. Jonathan Germinanda, MSP


EASTER 2020 MESSAGE

EASTER – A CELEBRATION OF LIFE

“Death and life have contended in that combat stupendous:
 The Prince of life, who died, reigns immortal…

Christ indeed from death is risen, our new life obtaining.” (Sequence for Easter)

 

The Lenten Season began this year just as the coronavirus, CoVid-19, was already slowly spreading outside China.  Weeks through the season of Lent, the face of illness and death began to be seen across the globe as governments scrambled to impose lockdowns and restrictions while constantly insisting on the people to practice social distancing.  It was only a matter of time that a pandemic became inevitable.

Easter comes this year amid a pandemic which has caused havoc all over the world.  As cases continue to surge and the death toll rises, the past two months have seen a new normal in the life of people all over the world affecting all sectors of society.  Indeed it can be said that this pandemic will define this generation and when this is over, it will change our way of life.  Even as a Church, we have learned how to find creative ways to reach out and accompany the faithful who in this troubled time long to find refuge in the Church and in their faith.  Priests and other church ministers, through online Masses and other prayer services, provided spiritual strength as the community wages this battle, this unprecedented war since WWII as some would say, against an invisible enemy.  We have seen and read all these stories for the past weeks: stories of heroism on the part of health workers, doctors, nurses, and all the other frontliners who risk their lives just so basic services to the community would continue.  You, brothers, may have been doing the same in your mission fields and caring for the Christian faithful entrusted to you.  The Holy Father himself calls these health workers and frontliners “saints next door”, and many of them have offered their lives until the end.

Going through all that has been happening in the world today at this most important and holiest moment in our Christian faith and amidst the confusion and exhaustion, desperation and isolation, fear and death, that is being experienced by many, we are celebrating Easter:  Death and life have contended in that combat stupendous, the Prince of life, who gave Himself over to death, has triumphed over death, and reigns immortal.  More than ever, this Easter proclamation of our faith needs to resound all over the world. 

We are an Easter people.  We are a people who believe the Good News:  Jesus is alive!  Death has no power over us.  If we truly believe this, we will not be discouraged and allow fear to overcome us, we will never lose hope and together with all the men and women who brave this battle against death, as missionaries we accompany the people in faith knowing that in the end this shall be won by the One who is Life.

As we journey into the Easter season, may we give witness to this celebration of life in the midst of the continuing threat of the coronavirus around us, let our efforts be filled with this Resurrection faith and may our lives reflect this faith.

A Blessed Easter for us all!

FR. JONATHAN N. GERMINANDA, MSP

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