It is Easter Monday- this day holds religious significance for Christians, as it follows Easter Sunday, the day Jesus Christ was resurrected following his crucifixion on Good Friday.
It is believed that Jesus remained on earth for 40 days after his resurrection, and during this time he appeared to believers, healed the sick and spread the word of God.
The acts he carried out during this period are thought to have helped establish the first church. After the 40 days ended, Christians believe that he ascended into heaven.
The Bible itself does not say anything about what happened on Easter Monday, after Jesus’ resurrection, and it also doesn’t specifically instruct Christians to celebrate the Monday following Easter Sunday.
Pope Gives Easter Message
Pope Francis said at the start of his Easter message that “Jesus, who was crucified, has risen as He said. Alleluia!”
Due to measures against the Covid-19 Pandemic, Pope Francis delivered his Urbi et Orbi message inside St. Peter’s Basilica.
The Basilica featured arrays of Avalanche roses given by Dutch florists who traditionally filled St. Peter’s Square with flowers on Easter every year, but had to stop temporarily due to the pandemic.
The Easter reality of the Resurrection offers concrete, tangible hope and consolation, the Pope noted, but its message does not offer us “a mirage or reveal a magic formula” we might wish as an escape exit to the world’s difficult realities.
Among them, the spread of the pandemic, social and economic crisis hitting the poor especially, but also, he noted the “scandalous” fact that “armed conflicts have not ended and military arsenals are being strengthened.”
The Easter message of hope tells us concisely that “the crucified Jesus, none other, has risen from the dead”, Pope Francis said, adding that God the Father raised Jesus, who accomplished His saving will by taking upon Himself our weakness, infirmities, the weight of our sins, even our death.
Because of this, the Pope said, “God the Father exalted Him and now Jesus Christ lives forever; He is the Lord.”
The wounds Jesus bears in His hands, feet and side are “the everlasting seal of His love for us”, the Pope noted, and all who experience trials in body or spirit can find refuge in them and “receive the grace of the hope that does not disappoint.”
Pope Francis went on to say that the Risen Christ gives hope and comfort for those suffering from the pandemic, the sick and those who have lost a loved one.
He also prayed that the Lord might “sustain the valiant efforts of doctors and nurses”. He stressed that everyone, especially the vulnerable, needs assistance and has a right to care, and vaccines are essential.
He appealed to the international community “to commit to overcoming delays in the distribution of vaccines and to facilitate their distribution, especially in the poorest countries.”
The Risen Lord is comfort for the unemployed and those suffering economic difficulties, the Pope said. He prayed that Christ might “inspire public authorities to act so that everyone, especially families in greatest need” can be provided with help in order to avoid sliding into poverty, a sad reality the pandemic has dramatically worsened.
The Pope referred also to the psychological weight of the pandemic on young people, who are often forced to stay at home without attending school or visiting friends in person.
He expressed his “closeness to young people throughout the world”.