Easter message from Archbishop Philip Freier

Wednesday, 8 Apr 2009

It’s not hard to imagine the grief and devastation of that first Good Friday just under two thousand years ago, the time when Jesus, God’s Son, who had brought compassion, inspiration, healing and hope to crowds across Galilee and down to Jerusalem, was put to death on a cross. For His family and friends on that bleak hillside, it was seemingly the end not only of His life but of all that He had promised.

But hope did not die. On that early Sunday morning the women returned to Jesus’ tomb, only to find the stone that sealed it had been rolled away. Death was not the end. Jesus rose to new life. That first Easter sets the pattern for the resurrection life that is possible for any of us who live as followers of Jesus Christ.

Easter is about hope. Hope in God for all who enter into a relationship with Him.“The peace of the Lord be with you” is the phrase Christians say to each other during worship. Even in the darkest of times, the peace of God is accessible to all who would believe.

Through relationship with Him, and in the power of the Holy Spirit, we can be a people of hope – even in the midst of the pain of illness or personal loss, or anxieties about what is happening in the world around us, such as climate change and the global financial crisis.

I am also deeply mindful of the terrible losses suffered in the recent bushfires in Victoria. But even in such tragic circumstances, the love and hope of Christ was powerfully present in the selfless giving of the fire fighters and voluntary helpers.

Whatever your situation, whatever joys there are in your life or problems which are causing you to be troubled or grieving, may you know God’s love and peace this Easter time and the hope of life eternal through the risen Christ.

Taken from Anglican Media Melbourne