Turn toward Light!

Tuesday in the Octave of Easter
April 11, 2023

Today’s Readings:


Today, in God’s Lavish Mercy, we share the heartfelt experience of the early disciples captured in a few poignant comments.

Sometimes words are so full of meaning that they burst in your heart when you read them — when you hear them

Two such phrases rise up from our readings today: 

Cut to the heart

In our first reading, the Easter-liberated Apostles preach the Gospel with gusto! They tell it – exactly like it is- to the crowd gathered in Jerusalem:

On the day of Pentecost, Peter said to the Jewish people,
“Let the whole house of Israel know for certain
that God has made him both Lord and Christ,
this Jesus whom you crucified.”

Acts 2:36

….” this Jesus whom you crucified..”

For those in that crowd, these were shattering words to hear! The feeling is like when you drop a precious vase and it crumbles at your feet! What do you do now? It is too late to redeem the brokenness! They were “cut to the heart” by the realization.

But that is the wonder of the Resurrection. It is never too late! Our life in God is never irrevocably broken!

Peter, motivated by Jesus’ own act of forgiveness from the cross, said to them,

“Repent and be baptized, every one of you,
in the name of Jesus Christ, for the forgiveness of your sins;
and you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit.
For the promise is made to you and to your children
and to all those far off,
whomever the Lord our God will call.”

Acts 2:38-39


Our Gospel extends this theme of restoration and hope. As we pray with its grace-filled drama, we thank John for being the only Evangelist to record this poignant moment between Jesus and Mary.

After Mary had discovered the empty tomb, and summoned the other disciples to see it, she lingers there once they have returned the city. 

She doesn’t know what to do! Feel her confusion, her distress. Easter faith has not yet dawned in her. She thinks the precious body of Jesus has been stolen, perhaps desecrated – again, like a beautiful vessel splintered and lost forever.

Then she turns toward the Light – as we all must do when we are overshadowed in doubt.

She said to the angels, “They have taken my Lord,
and I don’t know where they laid him.”
When she had said this, she turned around and saw Jesus there…

John 20:14

Still, she doesn’t fully recognize him until he lovingly speaks her name. Then she in turn utters the word so full of devotion and love: Rabbouni 

Noli Me Tangere – Antonio Corregio

Think about it! You can imagine how she felt when she said it – just like you would feel if you thought you had lost a Beloved but they returned to you alive and transformed!

Let’s be with Jesus and Mary in this sacred moment, hearing our own name spoken by our Beloved, responding in amazed tenderness from the depths of our heart.

Poetry: Rabboni! by John Banister Tabb (1845 – 1909) an American poet, Roman Catholic priest, and professor of English.

"I bring thee balm, and, lo, Thou art not here!
Twice have I poured mine ointment on Thy brow,
And washed Thy feet with tears. Disdain'st Thou now
The spikenard and the myrrh?"
“Has Death, alas, betrayed Thee with a kiss
That seals Thee from the memory of mine?”
“Mary!” It is the self-same Voice Divine.
"Rabboni!" -- only this.

Music: Rabboni – Ken Young

You were there when the world had turned against me.
When the darkness had possessed my soul,
Your tender mercy made me whole.
When I followed You, my life was filled with meaning
From the morning to the evening.
I’ve seen the face of God.

Rabboni! My Teacher and my God!
You’re alive and my burdens melt away.
Rabboni! Sweet Son of God Most High!
I know death has lost its power
And Your glory’s here to stay. (repeat).

When I close my eyes
I can hear Your voice so clearly saying,
“Father, please forgive them,
For they know not what they do.”
What good reason did they have to do
The things they did to You?

So I come once again bringing all I have to offer,
Just to find a dark and empty tomb,
Your holy frame somehow exhumed.
Then I hear someone say,
“Why are tears so freely falling?
Can’t You hear the voice that’s calling?
A voice that knows Your name.”

6 thoughts on “Turn toward Light!

    1. To me, Dee, it means his human form that they had been used to now appears filled with divine splendor … much like at the Transfiguration. Have you ever met someone who just beautiful because of their goodness? Well, this is goodness to the max, to the infinite, shining now in Christ.

      Liked by 2 people

  1. Lucille Hillerman

    This Eastertime of year always renews me and gives my faith a new burst of energy. Many times, as like today, your reflections do the same for me! Thank you, Renee!❤️🙏


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