April 21, 2019

 

Friends,

Happy Easter! The priests and staff of the 3 parishes in the Blue Hills Collaborative wish you all the best as we celebrate the Resurrection and its importance on our lives. As you know, I have the utmost respect for those from other religious affiliations and for those who claim no belief in God. The God that I have come to know respects their journey and so do I.

My belief in God and the Resurrection of Christ does not give me an advantage over anyone else in God’s eyes but it does add to my personal peace and fulfillment. The person of Jesus, who walked this land, led by example and was the Christ, has had a profound impact on my life and continues to determine my life choices. Obviously, because I believe Jesus rose from the dead, my life not only affects my attitude toward life but my attitude toward death as well. I can honestly tell you that because I love life as a human being, I don’t look forward to dying. Why would I want to leave this world and those that I love? At the same time, I am not just human, I’m also Christian, so even thought I don’t look forward to death, I’m not afraid of dying because I believe there is life after this life. I mentioned in last week’s bulletin that the meaning of Resurrection is up for interpretation. As it is said, “we may not know what is beyond the grave but we do know who.” Another way of expressing that is “heaven is living in the presence of God after I die.” That is what I celebrate with you today.

I listen very carefully to the eulogies that are given at our funerals. I am so impressed with the very emotional presentations given by family members or friends about their deceased loved ones. Their words usually highlight even another understanding of Resurrection as they express how their loved one will continue to live on within their family. Their goodness, example, wisdom, and faith will be perpetuated within the next generations of that family. So I believe my parents are celebrating new life in God’s presence but also continue to live on within our family.

I know many people who believe that life ends when we take our last breath. I’m sure they can live very fulfilling lives and I believe God accompanies them throughout their life journey. I would say I’m happy for them if they're happy.

But today I thank God for Christianity and my Catholic faith. I am so appreciative to all those who shared Christianity with me and encouraged me to celebrate my faith while continuing to question it. Today, you are among those who continue to inspire me as a priest. Thank you.

Happy Easter!
Father Coyne

 

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