The culmination of the Christian year is soon upon us.  Since February, when we donned sack-clothes and ashes, and entered into penance and fasting, the world has moved on much as before.  The parade of violence and distress has not ceased.  Just this week, we watched the violent horrors unfold in Brussels and gathered with anxiety as the Little Sisters of the Poor defended their right to love as Christ loved, free from the violent imposition of the state.  The candidates for Presidency, never an epitome of decency, have continued to bite and claw one another for the chance to be declared ruler of the world, a title already reserved by the Lord of Lies himself.

As the fervor of the world keeps increasing into a violent hurricane of climate change, eugenics, murder, relativism, godlessness, and despair, we reflect these next few days not about this world, but the next.  On the infamous Friday some two millennium ago, Satan, for all man could tell, had triumphed.  He had betrayed Christ with a kiss, and Satan glorified as Jesus Christ, the Son of God, hung upon the wooden cross.  Christ’s blood poured forth from the crown of thorns upon His head, the scourges on His back, and the nails in His feet and hands.  At the three o’clock hour, He gave up His spirit and the demons howled feverishly.  His side was pierced and His lifeless body returned to the ground.

Yet, it is upon this great scandal, the scandal of Divinity’s death, that life poured forth for us poor sinners.  His pierced side, from which blood and water flowed, became for us that which washes away our inequities and cleanses us of our sin.  The scandal of the cross is truly a triumph, but not for death.  Through the cross, Christ conquered death; death which was our birthright from the original sin of Adam and Eve.

There is truly no greater mystery of God than the humanity of Christ.  His Resurrection gives us hope; it gives us hope in the promise of eternal life and the hope that our world will be made perfect when He comes again.  The Christian faith is grounded in the mystery of Christ’s true flesh and blood from which the wellspring of salvation comes.  It is from His passion, death, and resurrection that we know there is eternal life offered to all, if only we embrace His mercy and do as He taught.

“Repent, the kingdom of God is at hand.”  This is not idle rhetoric for His kingdom is truly at hand and He soon comes in His glory to claim all the faithful for His Father in heaven.  Time will end soon whether it be tomorrow, next year, or in another two millennium.  In the short time we each have left, a mere drop in the ocean of eternity, what are we doing with it?  Are we giving all to Him and uniting ourselves to Him, He who transforms our worthless actions into His very Blood that redeems the world?  Let us, with unreserved hearts, joyously and reverentially welcome Our Lord as He suffers, dies, and rises for us these next three days.  May we unite ourselves to His passion, to His suffering, and to His death so that we too may share in the joy of eternal life in the Resurrection.