He has been raised just as he said. -Matthew 28:7
God is faithful to his word. On this Easter day, we celebrate God’s faithful love that has conquered death itself through the resurrection of our Lord Jesus Christ.
Throughout the year, the Church recalls God’s promise of salvation by praying the Angelus – the announcement of the angel Gabriel to the Virgin Mary that she would be the Mother of the Savior. On behalf of all humanity, Mary received God’s word and gave her yes, her “fiat”. Mary persevered in that “fiat” throughout the entire life of Jesus: his infancy and childhood, his departure from home as an adult, at Cana, during his public ministry, through his passion to the foot of the Cross. She never took back her yes, and she never doubted God’s faithfulness to his word.
During the Easter season, the Angelus is replaced by the Regina Caeli – rejoicing with Mary that God has fulfilled his promise of salvation. Although there is no Scriptural account of the risen Lord appearing to Mary, it is reasonable to assume that he showed himself to his Mother, as he did to so many other disciples after the Resurrection: Mary Magdalene (Jn 20:14, Mk 16:9) and the other women (Mt 28:7), Peter and the Eleven (Mt 28: Mk 16:14, Lk 24:36, John 20:19, 26, 21:1), the disciples on the road (Mk 16:12, Lk 24:15), Peter (Lk 24:34), five hundred disciples at once and to Paul (1 Corinthians 15:5-8).
In the cathedral in Chartres, along with the magnificent stained glass windows, there is a series of sculptures of the life of Mary and Jesus. One panel depicts the risen Lord showing himself to Mary. It is a mirror image of the Annunciation. Mary is at prayer, and instead of an angel coming to announce the birth of the Savior, Jesus himself shows her with the joyful news of his risen life.
With Mary’s help, may we also hold fast to God’s faithful word, and give our yes each day. And as we meet Jesus continually in the breaking of the bread, may he set our hearts on fire with his love and fill us with zeal to go and announce to all the world that God is faithful to his word – the Jesus our Lord is indeed risen and living, just as he said.