Alleluia. Christ is risen!
Last night at the Easter Vigil, bells rang out and we brought the church out of darkness into light – the light of Christ.
This morning we celebrate afresh, in the spirit of Mary Magdalene, the glorious Gospel … the Good News that Christ died and on the third day rose again … the Good News that heralds the joyous fact that from that moment on everything was different. Our celebration continues today with the wonderful privilege of baptising, as has been the custom of the Church on this day since the earliest times, three precious young children.
We welcome three children, their families and friends today for baptism. Our celebration today is a far cry from the media’s insistence that Easter, like Christmas, has lost its real meaning; that it has become just another retail season. The BBC writes, “A large, feathery egg stands in the middle of a small street in a shopping area in north London. Beneath it is an Easter message: ‘This egg is to remind people to shop at the independent retailer’”.
Such messages reinforce the importance of our telling, re-telling and telling again the Good News of the Easter Story – just as Peter and Paul do in our readings. It is the re-telling of this story, our story, which has been at the heart of our Holy Week Services. And so we have been reminded that it remains just as much Good News today as it did to the early Christians. Following the risen Christ means life, abundant and joy-filled life. That is what we celebrate today in the renewal of our Baptismal vows together with those being newly baptised.
He is risen indeed. Alleluia!