Fr. Pinto's Easter Message
Dear Disciples of Jesus & Mary, Missionaries of Mercy and friends:
My special prayers and blessings to you all and your families. Please know that you and your intentions are in my personal prayers, especially during the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass!
The world has placed a heavy burden in our hearts, seeking to confuse us and ultimately discourage us. The root of this attack lies in the understanding of “image and likeness”. We often look at the pictures or photographs that were taken early. These images never grow old but we do. And the world is trying desperately to fight the signs of age.
Our generation is known for its makeovers and often extreme makeovers. There are thousands of anti aging creams available. In the part of the world where people are light colored, there are all kinds of tanning aids. Many spend long hours getting a tan. In the colored world, there are various creams to protect people from sun burn. People use umbrellas and many will use whitening cream. In the novel, “The Picture of Dorian Gray” by Oscar Wilde; you see how young Dorian desires that he remains young while his picture gets older. And this is exactly what happens. Jesus looked at the young man and loved him and said to him, “Go sell all you have and give it to the poor and then come and follow me.” And the young man went away sad because he had many possessions.
Easter is a time when the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ reminds us of who we are. Unlike the thinking of the world, we have to continuously grow into the “image and likeness of God”. We never age for our Father; because what we see now will pass away and we will put on immortality. Nonetheless this process is a constant process and it must be achieved by dying to oneself, contrary to what the world tells us. When you see through the eyes of love, then everything looks new. If beauty is in the eye of beholder, then if we abide in the Lord and put on his mind, we too will see all things through His eyes.
God our Father sees all things outside time and beyond the limitations of space. He sees us in the way He created us and so it is only through His eyes that we can see our true nature. With Him, this Easter, we can wonder at the beauty of His creation. If we can see His goodness and love manifested in us, we shall then easily see the same in others.
Jesus our Master and friend came into the world to show us the way home. When I saw the movie ET, I could hear the words home, home, repeated often. I remember the day when I left
From that day onwards I never felt the separation from leaving home. The reason why we are afraid of getting old and losing the beauty of our youth, is the fear that we will be rejected and left alone. Yes, that is what the world does. However with the Lord it is different. The older we get, we know it is getting time for us to return to our eternal home. It is time for us to discard this mortal nature and put on immortality. We see the beauty of our human nature in the mystery of the Transfiguration. Jesus shows us what we will all become because of His love for us. As His disciples we kneel before the cross of our Lord together with Mary Magdalene. There we allow the blood of Our Savior to wash our pride, selfishness, hatred, anger, resentment, fear, worries, lust, and countless other sins and weaknesses. As the world strips us of its passing glory, we then put on the eternal robe of glory won for us by our Lord and Master.
The Holy Spirit gives us a better understanding of how to be truly happy. Often people are sad because they are lonely. We know that Jesus rose from the dead and that He is with us always, because of His promise, “I will be with you always, till the end of time.” During this Easter season, we should all ask the Holy Spirit to give us the strength and the wisdom to forgive, let go thoughts of revenge and anger, to respond with trust when faced with trials, to abide in lasting joy and peace as we journey the way of truth, fidelity and love.
I have watched how a face can change because of anger and resentment. There is always a glow on the face of the person who looks upon the Lord and seeks interiorly to walk in the ways of the Lord. The Holy Spirit is the giver of life and it is He who can bring laughter in our lives. In a world that is struggling with hope, filled with doubt and fear because of terrorism and violence, and hardened because of communal hatred, prejudice, and enmity: the Holy Spirit reminds us of the promises of Christ. We know that the Lord lives in us and we are aware that God truly loves us. We open our hearts to the Most Holy Trinity and allow them to fashion within us their own loving image. May their love bring us to live our Plan of Life; so that in all things we may glorify their Name in time and eternity!
Mary our Mother speaks to us about how we can during this joyful season of Easter conform ourselves to the image and likeness of God. With her we learn to ponder the great things the Lord does for us. We believe what the Lord has promised us; so that we receive in gratitude what love has planned and willed for us. We leave all our cares and burdens aside. As we live our Consecration and its promises, we wipe away from our faces and more so from our hearts, the lines or worry, anxiety, fear, and death. Sheltered by the mantle of her love, we carry the Eucharistic Lord in our hearts; and it is in this mysterious union that grows to become into the fullness of that image and likeness that we see in the person of Jesus our Master.
In your humility ask all the angels and saints and all the holy souls in heaven to intercede for you. Seek their assistance to be an instrument of joy and peace to your family, friends and all those that you meet. May the love of the Lord flow through you to all so that they may come to recognize that each one is created in the “image and likeness” of their Father. Through His resurrection Jesus has taken away death and restored us to the joy of celebrating an eternal Easter with Him. In the Eucharist we can celebrate this every day of our lives. As we abide in love, we see the beauty in each one, as we see ourselves through the eyes of our Lord, Our friend, and our Father.
I pray that Easter season that we all experience the joy and peace that Jesus offers us and may we be true witnesses to His love and mercy to all!
I impart on you my priestly blessings, in the Name of the Father, and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit.
Fr. Santan Pinto SOLT