5 facts about Easter that every Catholic needs to know

04-14-2024Weekly Reflection© Catholic News Agency

The Resurrection of Christ marks the beginning of a very special liturgical season in the Church called Easter, whose origin dates back to ancient times and has various traditions.

1. The origins of Easter go back to the feasts of ancient nomadic or semi-nomadic shepherds who, some 4000 years ago, celebrated outside a sanctuary, without a priest or altar. A young animal was killed and cooked, without breaking any bones. The blood was smeared on the tent poles as a protection against dangers.

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Fear

04-07-2024Weekly ReflectionJames Gaffney ©Pilot Bulletins

At a recent community meeting, many residents were expressing their fears—fears of crime, terrorism, the economy, health care, etc. It seems as though we are controlled by fear. People base their decisions and actions on the negative things that might happen, rather than the positive things that could happen. Such negative thinking only engenders more fear and apprehension, drowning out the possibility of a better, more creative society.

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Easter Sunday

03-31-2024Weekly ReflectionJames Gaffney ©Pilot Bulletins

Moments of truth call for a choice, a simple yes or no to the opportunity offered, the path to be taken, the person to be loved, or the value to be embraced. The most important decisions in these moments of truth are irrevocable, changing the course of our lives, the lives of those we love and even the course of history. But it is hard to predict or envision. Some important events masquerade as insignificant while others are all hype and of little value.

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Darkness at Noon

03-24-2024Weekly ReflectionDr. Scott Hahn

Crowned with thorns, our Lord is lifted up on the Cross, where He dies as “King of the Jews.” Notice how many times He is called “king” in today’s Gospel—mostly in scorn and mockery.

As we hear the long accounts of His Passion, at every turn we must remind ourselves—He suffered this cruel and unusual violence for us.

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The “Hour” Comes

03-17-2024Weekly ReflectionDr. Scott Hahn

Our readings today are filled with anticipation. The days are coming, Jeremiah prophesies in today’s First Reading. The hour has come, Jesus says in the Gospel. The new covenant that God promised to Jeremiah is made in the “hour” of Jesus—in His Death, Resurrection, and Ascension to the Father’s right hand.

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Living in the Light

03-10-2024Weekly ReflectionDr. Scott Hahn

The Sunday readings in Lent have been showing us the high points of salvation history—God’s covenant with creation in the time of Noah; His promises to Abraham; the law He gave to Israel at Sinai.

In today’s First Reading, we hear of the destruction of the kingdom established by God’s final Old Testament covenant—the covenant with David (see 2 Samuel 7; Psalm 89:3).

His chosen people abandoned the law He gave them. For their sins, the temple was destroyed, and they were exiled in Babylon. We hear their sorrow and repentance in the exile lament we sing as today’s Psalm.

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Spiritual Sacrifice

03-03-2024Weekly ReflectionDr. Scott Hahn

Jesus does not come to destroy the temple, but to fulfill it (see Matthew 5:17)—to reveal its true purpose in God’s saving plan.

He is the Lord the prophets said would come—to purify the temple, banish the merchants, and make it a house of prayer for all peoples (see Zechariah 14:21; Malachi 3:1–5; Isaiah 56:7).

The God who made the heavens and the earth, who brought Israel out of slavery, does not dwell in sanctuaries made by human hands (see Acts 7:48; 2 Samuel 7:5).

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