As Easter unfolds, we hear these words: Christ is risen, the light has dawned, and hope is born anew.

The Easter story invites us to travel with Jesus through the reality of death to new life. Like Jesus, Christians are called to surrender the pain and suffering of our world into the arms of our compassionate God. Our God walks with us as we respond to the misery, hardship, and pain of so many realities in the world today – the atrocities of war and violence, hunger and injustice, environmental destruction and the thousands of refugees walking their own journey to Calvary. Through the events of Holy Week, we experience intimacy and rejection, joy and sorrow, despair and hope, betrayal, and faithfulness.

Easter celebrates a story where the fullness of our humanity and divinity embrace. It is a sacred story with which we can all identify. At times we find ourselves standing at the foot of the cross enduring suffering and pain, at other times we are like the women grieving at the grave of our loved ones, and on other occasions we find ourselves rejoicing in the goodness and kindness of another. Through all of this we meet Christ in whom ‘we live, move and have our being’ (Acts 17:28).

The Easter event transforms Jesus into a new of being and calls us to do the same. The early disciples’ lives changed forever as they encountered the Risen Christ. They changed from being fearful to being courageous as their consciousness of Love impelled them to continue the mission entrusted to them.

As we celebrate Easter this year, our call is to be people of hope. To be people who let the light of the Easter candle burn brightly within so that others may share in the reassurance of what the Easter message offers. Even amidst the atrocities coming out of the war in Ukraine, we see glimmers of hope and life. We see people reaching out and welcoming people to their homes, providing food, clothes, and comfort, playing music, and bringing moments of joy. Easter reveals God’s desire to transform our doubts, our worries, and fears into experiences of new life. Where do you see the seeds of new life emerging in our world and church today? How can we be bearers of hope in a complex world?

In the garden near me, is a beautiful display of Japanese Anemones which I have come to associate with Easter as they come into full bloom at this time. Their beauty enriches my life and enables me to breathe in the gift of Easter joy.

What are the Easter symbols and images that speak to your heart?

May this Easter time be a blessed time, to reflect and provide you with the opportunity to find new inspiration for your life.

May the peace and joy of Easter fill your heart with love.

Sr Monica Cavanagh
Congregational Leader
Sisters of Saint Joseph of the Sacred Heart

Sr Monica shares an Easter video message of hope and reflection below.