March 27, 2024 at 9:34 a.m.

Jesus Christ is risen, Alleluia!

What longing and thirst do we have in our hearts for God?
WORD OF FAITH: A breakdown of each week's upcoming Sunday readings to better understand the Word of God at Mass.
WORD OF FAITH: A breakdown of each week's upcoming Sunday readings to better understand the Word of God at Mass.

By Father Anthony Ligato | Comments: 0 | Leave a comment

Easter Sunday is the celebration of the Resurrection of Our Lord Jesus Christ from the dead. We are given a share in the resurrection of Our Lord Jesus Christ through the waters of baptism. On Easter Sunday, we will have the opportunity to renew our baptismal promises. In Our Lord rising from the dead, we ourselves are free from sin and death through the waters of baptism. From the Blood of the Cross for which Jesus hung on, flows the waters of baptism. Jesus himself thirsted for our salvation, in the final words Jesus spoke before he died, he said, “I thirst.” (Jn 19:28) We also thirst and the only way our thirst can be quenched is through the waters of baptism. We come to Jesus to have our thirst quenched in his suffering, death and resurrection. The renewal of our baptismal promises renews for us the experience of having our thirst quenched. Like the woman at the well, we are invited to drink from the waters of new life. “Sir give me this water, so that I may not be thirsty or have to keep coming here to draw water.” (Jn 4:15)  

“Don’t be alarmed,” he said. “You are looking for Jesus the Nazarene, who was crucified. He has risen! He is not here. See the place where they laid him.” — Mark 16:6

I would like to share with you the story of a young boy who reminds us all of the importance of drinking from those waters of new life. The young boy was 3 years old when the story takes place. When he was baptized as an infant, his parents were presented with a small bottle of holy water that was used for their son’s baptism. The parents placed the bottle of holy water on a shelf in their son’s room where it sat undisturbed for three years. Then one day the boy’s mother was cleaning his room when she came across the empty holy water bottle. She asked what happened to the water inside, and he said, “I drank it.” She asked her son why he drank the holy water. He said, “I was thirsty!” A few days later, he came to church and his mother shared the story with me. I turned to the boy and asked how the water tasted, he said, “It was great!” His mother said, “One thing we know for sure, the waters of baptism do not have a shelf life.” The story reminds us that the waters of baptism are the only waters that can truly quench our thirst. As read in Psalm 42, (Easter Vigil), “Like a deer that longs for running streams, my soul longs for you, my God.” 

It is that longing for God that brought Mary Magdalene, Mary the mother of James and Salome to the tomb early in the morning of the first day of the week. “Very early when the sun had risen, on the first day of the week, they came to the tomb. They were saying to one another, who will roll back the stone for us? When they looked up, they saw that the stone had been rolled back.” (Mk 16:2-3; Easter Vigil) Their longing and thirst were quenched in the empty tomb. “On entering the tomb, they saw a young man sitting on the right side, clothed in a white robe, and He said to them, do not be amazed! You seek Jesus of Nazareth, the crucified. He has been raised.” (Mk 16:5-6)

What longing and thirst do we have in our hearts for God? The longing and thirst of the women who went to the tomb early in the morning on that first day of the week were to be comforted by performing the ritual custom of anointing Jesus’ body with spices. By partaking in a familiar belief and ritual custom, they felt they would find some sense of peace and comfort. Only the empty tomb would bring them comfort and satisfy their longing and thirst. 

It was this same unquenchable thirst that drove Simon Peter and John the Beloved Disciple to run to the empty tomb to confirm what Mary Magdalene had told them that the tomb was empty. Peter, who had denied Christ, thirsted for forgiveness and a new beginning. The resurrection of the Lord would allow for that forgiveness and a new beginning. For this reason, we proclaim, “This is the day the Lord has made; let us rejoice and be glad.” (Ps 118:24)

What thirst do we have that needs to be quenched? Whatever that thirst is, only our resurrected Lord can quench that thirst in the waters of baptism. As the baptized, our lives are with God and as children born again by water and the Spirit. We renew our baptismal promises knowing our thirst is forever quenched in the resurrection of the Lord.


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