Diocese of Albany

 

Home

Diocesan Update Archive

Bishop's Update

An Easter Message from Bishop Love

 

March 31, 2013

Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,

Last night, Karen and I were blessed to be at the Cathedral of All Saints for the celebration of the Great Easter Vigil during which time six people were confirmed and eight were received into this communion. It was a beautiful and very meaningful service as we blessed the new "Fire" and recalled God's redeeming acts throughout history, culminating with the glorious celebration of the resurrection of our Lord Jesus Christ. This morning we celebrated Easter with the people of the Church of the Redeemer in Rensselaer where I had the great privilege of preaching and celebrating Holy Communion.

How good it is, after the 40 long days of Lent to once again proclaim to the world: Alleluia! Christ is risen! There is no greater or more joyful message in all of creation than the Good News of Jesus' resurrection on Easter Sunday.

The empty tomb that greeted Mary Magdalene and the other women as well as Peter and John that first Easter Sunday is not what they expected. They went looking for Jesus' dead body, having been unable to hear or believe that which the Lord had told them of how "the Son of Man must suffer many things and be rejected by the elders and chief priests and scribes, and be killed, and on the third day be raised" (Luke 9:22). The empty tomb followed by the disciples' many encounters with the risen Lord Jesus was a witness to Christ's victory over Satan and all the powers of darkness, sin and death.

Tragically, there are many today who have gone to great lengths to try to downplay, explain away, or totally deny the bodily resurrection of Jesus Christ. To do so not only contradicts the resurrection accounts in Holy Scripture, but also fails to understand and appreciate the vital necessity of our Lord's death and resurrection for the salvation of God's people. Jesus did that which we are incapable of doing for ourselves. He offered Himself as the one full, perfect, sufficient sacrifice for the sins of the world by dying on the cross for us - for your sins and mine and the sins of all people for all time. As Paul reminds us, "...all of us who have been baptized into Christ Jesus were baptized into His death... so that, just as Christ was raised from the dead by the glory of the Father, so we too might walk in newness of life" (Romans 6:3-4).

The death and resurrection of Jesus Christ is and always has been central to the Christian faith. It is not a fable or some story made up by man to help us feel better about dying. It is the very heart of the Gospel - the Good News of Jesus Christ. Our Lord's death and resurrection is the perfect expression of God's total, unconditional, all sacrificial love for the world.

I pray this Easter that you and I and all the people of the Diocese of Albany will encounter the Risen Lord Jesus Christ in such a powerful way that our hearts and souls and minds will be so touched and transformed by God's love and redeeming grace that we will grow ever stronger in our faith and passion for Jesus, emboldened to go forth in His name proclaiming for all the world to hear: "Alleluia! Christ is risen! The Lord is risen indeed. Alleluia!"

In Christ's love,


+Bill

 

  Copyright © www.albanydiocese.org All rights are reserved