The Catholic Parish of
Saint John Henry Newman

 Covering most of East Leeds

Christ is Risen – He is Risen Indeed!

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About thirty or forty years before Christ was born, in the year 67BC a statesman, orator and writer called Marcus Cicero stood up in the Roman Forum to argue that the very idea of crucifixion, was barbaric and should be banned from the minds of civilised people. He referred to it as “The most cruel and atrocious of punishments,” asserting that it cast doubts on the Roman claim to civilisation. Twenty years later Cicero was himself executed by his own countrymen whilst fleeing from Rome. One hundred years after Cicero’s declaration about crucifixion being uncivilised and barbaric, another well-known public figure, St Paul, who was a Roman citizen, addressed the same question and wrote, “While the Jews demand miracles and the Greeks look for wisdom, we are preaching a crucified Christ.” For Cicero, the crucifixion of a Roman citizen was a sure sign of barbarity. For St Paul, the cross was a sign of our only hope, for Christ who loved us so much he died for us, also loves us so much that he shares
his resurrection with us. The cross gives us a reason for living, because we know and believe that our life here on earth is only a preparation for a life in which we see God face to face and that belief helps us to keep going when things go wrong and life becomes difficult and we are tempted to despair of it all.

A simple cross of simple wood upon a hilltop silent stood.
And on the Cross, a simple man was was God’s plan.
Yet standing here on Easter morn, while watching such a perfect dawn
That simple Cross just seems to me, a symbol of eternity.

May the risen Lord open our eyes, that we may see more clearly his deep love for us all

Published Sat 7th Apr 2012 08:34:26

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