Dear brothers and sisters in Christ,
As the great “Alleluia” is proclaimed in our empty and silent churches this Easter, we both rejoice and lament. In our hearts we sing of Jesus’ victory over the power of sin and death, but we weep because of the continuing devastation around the world provoked by the coronavirus pandemic.
Never before in our lifetime have we had to celebrate the Sacred Triduum without participating in the Church’s ancient Liturgies with crowded congregations. Stripped of our false sense of control over life and death, we nonetheless walked with Jesus the arduous path to Calvary. There we clung to the Cross raised above the earth, through which the Lord draws all people and all history to himself (cf. Jn 12:32).
Yet into the thick darkness caused by the insidious virus that engulfs our world, the radiant glory of the Risen Lord shines upon us. We are not doomed to despair, for He offers us even now a share in His eternal life.
During these past few weeks, we may have become weary and disheartened, afraid that we won’t be able to cope with the pandemic. But let’s not forget that from the darkness of the tomb, the Lord rose triumphant
The Cross leads us beyond our crushed expectations to the reality of Christian hope: hope in the power, love and mercy of God, who gives life to all things and makes them holy. The Cross is our “only hope” because it leads to the glory of the Resurrection.
The joy of knowing that Jesus is alive fills our hearts with a hope that is contagious and must be shared. We are called to be joyful servants of hope, who announce the Risen One by our lives and by our love.
Calling upon the maternal love of Mary, Star of Hope, let us ask her to protect our families and watch over all those afflicted by COVID-19 and those who so tenderly take care for them.
Wishing each of you a truly Blessed Easter and assuring you of my prayers, I remain
+J. Michael Miller, CSB
Archbishop of Vancouver