He Is Risen! Happy Easter!

Image: The Myrrhbearing Women, Mikhail Nesterov, 1901

I was unaware of the Orthodox devotion to the Myrrbearing women.

The disciples, men, affrighted and disbanded in all directions, as the Savior had predicted to them beforehand. But the holy women gathered themselves. The men were hiding, but the women went out in the light of day, heading to the market and buying myrrh and spices to anoint the Life-bearing Body of Christ. O, blessed women, how were you not afraid to go out alone at night, and how did you dare to approach that place guarded by royal soldiers, and how did you not fear, but strove to roll away the stone, break the seal, open the tomb and anoint the Body of the Lord with spices? These ascetic feats sprang from the zeal, reverence, and great bravery of your souls. Feeble women by nature, but not in your minds and hearts; for womanly weakness did not appear in you in any way, but all your feats surpassed the bravery of men. Upon you were truly fulfilled the words of Scripture, which say, My strength is made perfect in weakness (2 Cor. 12:9), and again, God hath chosen the weak things of the world to confound the things which are mighty (1 Cor. 1:27; cf. Ps. 8:2, Mt. 21:16). The words of our Most Holy Savior were truly in your hearts, Who said, fear not them which kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul (Mt. 10:28). And again the Holy Spirit says,  Be of good courage, and He shall strengthen your heart, all ye that hope in the Lord (Ps. 30:24). You completed the apostolic work before the apostles. You displayed the faith and courage of soul of the holy martyrs before them. 

A lovely homily from Msgr. Charles Pope. I have learned a lot about the relationship between a priest and his people from his daily homilette's to his people.

And UD President Thomas Hibbs offers The Shock of Wonder --with a not-apocryphal anecdote about my late beloved Phil professor Fritz Wilhelmsen.