HAPPY Easter! This is how Christians greet one another as they rejoice and celebrate the Resurrection of Jesus Christ who suffered, was crucified and died last Friday. No doubt, in faith, we believe that Jesus the Christ was risen from the dead after three days. Really? I will explore and present next week the answers to such question. But for now, I would like to focus my reflection on Jesus’ sufferings and crucifixion. Is it over already? Really?
I remember one book written by a Columban Priest in the 1990s. Fr. Brendan Lovett, SSC who pointed out that Jesus’ suffering and crucifixion still continue to happen even in our present time. That is why he entitled his book It’s Not Over Yet published by Christian Publications.
I’d like to believe and support his belief that Jesus’ sufferings and crucifixion still do happen in our time. Really? Yes. As long as people, especially the poor, continue to suffer as caused by the modern Pharisees, Sadducees, and Herodians. As long as the rich becomes richer and the poor becomes poorer. As long as there are people in our society who are considered the lost, the last and the least (especially women and children). As long as there are people being persecuted, extra judicially killed, and are being bullied I would like to believe that Jesus’ suffering is not over yet.
But since it is Easter Season, I don’t want to be over critical or so negative (because it’s not the usual me). I really believe that a hopeless Christian is no Christian at all. I am strongly convinced that Jesus the Christ was really risen from the dead and so Christians are really correct in greeting one another, “Happy Easter!” In fact, in the near future, I would be willing to share here the result of my research regarding people who have died but then came back to life. They are called the survivors of Near Death Experience (NDE) whose testimonies can be used as proof (aside from the Bible and the Catechism of the Catholic Church) that people who die can still return to life here on earth.
For now, let me point out one example (among the many) why I believe that we still may continue to hope that the suffering of Jesus the Christ may be over soon (though I suspect not in our life time). My family and I usually attend Sunday Mass at the San Antonio Abad Parish, Barangay Taculing. Last Palm Sunday, April 14, 2019, we went to church and as we arrived we saw some vendors of palms. We Catholics usually get one and bring it home and hung it on our doors or place it on our altars. By the way, I asked my friends for the meaning of such display of palms in their houses and I heard them say it is for driving some evil spirits. Really?
I thought it is to indicate that we welcome Jesus in our house as the “Son of David” (“Hosanna sa Anak ni David. Dayawon ang naga kari sa ngalan sang Ginoo!”) like what the Jews did when Jesus entered Jerusalem. Anyway, going back to why I believe there is still hope for our suffering to end, after asking the palm vendor for the price of palms, I also asked if such palms have been blessed already. I was told honestly that they are not blessed yet or else they cannot be sold. From such experience I had a glimpse that there are still people who are honest. It gave me an idea that there are still people who will not compromise the truth for the sake of money. This convinced and inspired me that we can still put an end to Christ’s suffering.
In conclusion, maybe we cannot right away put an end to Christ’s suffering but as long as there are honest people around us, most especially those who claim to be Christians, then we can say, “It’s not over yet but soon it will be over.”
*Since this is my first article, “Sa mga naka basa kag mag basa liwat, I ask God for three things:
- To Bless you
- To Guide you and
- To always protect you. (Thanks to my friend Philip “Bonjo” Gargaritano for these
Three Things. Also, thank you to the new Editor in Chief of Sun Star Bacolod, Mr. Churchill Aguilar, for inviting me to share my opinions and welcome Bacolod, the City of Smile (Really?).