Homilette for Monday, March 23, 2009

Monday of the Fourth Week of Lent

(Isaiah 65:17-21; John 4:43-54)

The Prospect of Immortality was written over forty years ago in an age of extravagant optimism. It describes the possibility of deep-freezing people at death so that they may be thawed when cures for their ailments are discovered. Since then, to my knowledge, there have been no accounts of successful revitalization. However, there have been reports of rotting cadavers of people who paid to have their dead bodies frozen.

It has been said that no one will get out of this world alive. Then what of our belief in the resurrection? In the first reading, Isaiah offers the springboard to this belief. God -- the prophet tells us -- will create a new earth where people will live hundreds of years. We believe that this new creation has been realized in Jesus Christ. He saves people from death as we see in the gospel today. He restores life as we read in the story of Lazarus and his sisters. And he will rise from the dead to eternal glory. We can assure ourselves that there is no “prospect of immortality” besides the hope of the resurrected Jesus redeeming us from death.