Monday within the Octave of Easter
(Acts 2:24.22-23; Matthew 28:8-15)
One of the inmates at the federal prison came to the chapel every Sunday for mass. He sat their quietly not calling attention to himself or giving his attention to anything but the Lord. He apparently had lived a somewhat loose life. His marriage ended, and then he had trouble with the law. But he learned his lesson. Repenting of his sins, he received a share of the Holy Spirit’s grace. Now he was to be released. He would live outside of prison with the same discipline that he was showing inside.
The most dramatic blessing of Easter is the gift of the Holy Spirit. It not only will bring the dead to life but renews the lives of the living. The first reading today makes this clear. Peter testifies that Jesus once raised from the dead pours forth the Holy Spirit upon his followers. Indeed by means of this Spirit Peter is preaching fearlessly to the people of Jerusalem.
We also qualify as followers of Jesus. He pours his Spirit upon us as well. We too can go out and proclaim Jesus risen from the dead. Because we may find cool reception to our words, we will probably show that Jesus has risen by gracious care for others. In any case, people will know that we have the Spirit because of our love for others.