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How do you hear the Easter story this year?

Silhouettes of Three CrossesThe Easter story is repeated every year! It is the same story but perhaps we hear it in a little different way than we did last year. Something within our lives has changed that brought us to our knees, or that gave us hope that all will be well.

How do you hear the Easter story this year? I really do love this time of year as I so often think of Jesus Christ really showing us the way. Nothing has ever been asked of us that was not asked of Christ. So here is my story.

These last few weeks I have been visiting a friend in the hospital. I stand and look at my friend with a prayer in my heart to hers, sending positive energy, praying that complete healing will be had — her Resurrection. As I stand there hearing the beeping of the machines, my thoughts are wondering what is the purpose of this moment and what am I to learn from this? I have no answer — I just continue to pray and think of the journey to Calvary and truly this is my friend’s Calvary journey right now.

Before her journey began she would visit the sick and their families, she would pray with them and through her own soul give the sick the strength to move forward with hope and peace in their hearts. She touched many lives; she nourished the hearts of those walking their own journey to Calvary by projecting hopefulness, a peacefulness that no matter what would happen our Christ would always be with them. She made a difference by simply being an ordinary person living a good and prayerful life. This was her Holy Thursday.

Good Friday, we know the story, the pain and the betrayal and so did Christ! But like Christ we need to embrace this story of mystery, of why this has happened. As I walk to my friend’s room in ICU, I pass many people with their heads bowed, seeing agony in their faces, overhearing a doctor tell a loved one, “This is very serious, your wife had a heart attack and we don’t know at this time the extent of the damage.” The gentleman sat there with his head bowed, tears were in his eyes and fear in his heart! Remember on Good Friday, after the long and painful journey Christ bowed his head, Christ’s arms were outstretched to embrace us all, Christ’s hands were opened to welcome us in. “Were you there when they crucified our Lord…”

Holy Saturday, what is the purpose of being in the tomb, being in this dark place, being in this cold place? I asked my friend’s sister, “How are you?” She replied, “I have my moments, I have my ups and downs.” And she simply shook her head. What is the purpose I ask Mary, the mother of Christ, she does not have the answer. Whatever Christ has us do — remember it is the miracle of love and mercy — whether it is here on this earth or God calling us home. So we continue to wait in the tomb of the unknown — believe it or not this is a very sacred time to be quiet, to sit, to trust, to cry, to hope, to listen, to honor our fears, to just be waiting for the miracle of the sacred within our hearts.

Alleluia, Christ is risen! This truly is an awesome day to celebrate the Resurrection of Christ. Easter Sunday is a day to smile within our own hearts, to listen to the Alleluias ringing out throughout our world. This story is my story for now, but our stories never stop unfolding.

The Sisters of Providence wish you and your families a very happy and Holy Easter! Please know that we care deeply about your stories as they unfold. Our love, prayers and support are with you. Remember Christ’s hands are opened to welcome us in! Happy Easter!

In God’s Providence,
Sister Diane Mason

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Sister Diane Mason

Sister Diane Mason served as director of Providence Associates for the Sisters of Providence until 2017. Prior to that she ministered for 37 years as a teacher or principal at the elementary level. She currently lives and volunteers in Orland Park, Illinois.

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