The choir of Westminster Cathedral sing Haec Dies by William Byrd:
‘This is the day which the Lord has made: let us be glad and rejoice in it. Alleluia.’
Today’s reading is from the Gospel of Matthew.
The women left the tomb quickly with fear and great joy, and ran to tell his disciples. Suddenly Jesus met them and said, "Greetings!" And they came to him, took hold of his feet, and worshipped him.Then Jesus said to them, "Do not be afraid; go and tell my brothers to go to Galilee; there they will see me." While they were going, some of the guard went into the city and told the chief priests everything that had happened.After the priests had assembled with the elders, they devised a plan to give a large sum of money to the soldiers, telling them, "You must say, ‘His disciples came by night and stole him away while we were asleep.’If this comes to the governor’s ears, we will satisfy him and keep you out of trouble."So they took the money and did as they were directed.
Matthew’s gospel shows us that the first hints of Jesus’s Resurrection raised mixed feelings in the women – feelings of fear, and feelings of great joy.What feelings are aroused in you when you hear of Jesus’s Resurrection?And what actions might these feelings prompt in you?
In the passage we also hear of the women’s strong attachment to Jesus.What’s your attachment to Jesus? Are there times when you’ve felt a sense of distance from him, but then a renewed unity between his life and yours?
As you hear the passage again, listen attentively to how others mentioned in this passage – the guards, the priest and the elders – listen to how they responded…
Jesus encourages us not to be afraid.Perhaps this feels difficult in the current state the world is in… How do you respond to this encouragement? How can you express your hopes to Jesus himself?
Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit. As it was in the beginning, is now and ever shall be, world without end. Amen.