+Fr. Dean Botsis, Holy Taxiarhai and St. Haralambos - Niles, IL | May 20, 2020
As we reflect on the Resurrection during these days, we might review the remarkable three-year ministry of Christ that is described in the holy Gospels.
Very little is written about the first thirty years of His life. But after Jesus was baptized and began teaching, healing and performing miracles, it was like an explosion! In the very first chapter of the Gospel of Mark, Jesus taught in the synagogue with authority, and healed a man possessed by an unclean spirit. “Immediately His fame spread throughout all the regions of Galilee.” (Mark 1:28) Then they brought to him all who were sick and demon-possessed: the whole city gathered at the door and He healed many.
Before long, multitudes of people from Galilee were following him, and multitudes came from near and far: from Judea and Jerusalem, from beyond the Jordan, from Tyre and Sidon.
Masses of people gathered around Him. Masses of people were healed of all kinds of sickness and ailments; lepers, crippled, blind, paralyzed, even raised from the dead! Masses of people were miraculously fed. In describing this, the Gospels surge with God’s power! Everywhere Jesus went, crowds of people crushed toward Him, and the crowds continued to grow.
There were so many miracles. The Evangelist John says that “there are also many other things that Jesus did, which if they were written one by one, I suppose that even the world itself could not contain the books that would be written.” (Jn 21:25)
And it continued. Three thousand men were baptized on the first Pentecost, only 50 days after the Resurrection. Thousands more were baptized soon after!
These events are recorded in history. They are real. Thousands of people believed in Him. This Christ is the same Savior that we worship today! In our age of science, technology, marginalization of faith and the value of life, many people choose not to believe in God. Some of us may have become influenced to be doubtful or disconnected from God.
Would the same God who created us in His own image and who loves us abandon us? During these troubling days, we turn to Him with faith and hope. Let us be reminded of God’s love and His power, and be fortified and emboldened. Isn’t this the meaning of proclaiming “Christ is Risen?”
The authorities who tried to silence Christ also tried to silence His Disciples. When they saw miracles done at the hands of Peter they ordered him to stop speaking of Christ and threatened him. He answered them: “For we cannot but speak the things that we have seen and heard.” (Acts 4:20).
We also witness to these things that Peter saw and heard. Like the Disciples, let us live our faith and place our hope in God’s infinite love.