Catholic Diocese Tucson

10 CATHOLIC OUTLOOK MAY 2019 Congregation de Notre Dame Sister Patricia McCarthy “April is the cruelest month, breeding Lilacs out of the dead land, mixing Memory and desire, stirring Dull roots with spring rain. Winter kept us warm, covering Earth in forgetful snow, feeding A little life with dried tubers.” T.S.Eliot, the author of these first seven lines of his famous poem, “The Waste Land,” could well be a contemporary columnist for any paper in the world today. April is always a tease for spring. In many parts of the country, the days can flip from sunny warm weather where coats are shed and windows opened to a late wintry blizzard which forces us to shovel and plow and keeps us inside by a fire. The poet probably isn’t just talking about temperature and precipitation. He’s alluding to a refusal to hope, to believe that there can be joy after suffering, that life can spring from despair. Or to put it in today’s news accounts, whether tweeted or printed, that there is more to life than terrorist attacks and discouraging presidential elections. It also reminds us that Easter is real, that resurrection can be a daily experience, rather than merely a day of yellow Peeps and chocolate bunnies. Resurrection is as difficult an act of faith as is suffering. Somehow, we aren’t as aware of the need to believe in it as we are of the necessity of faith during times of great distress. When the world seems to be crashing around us and we have nowhere to turn, often we think of God and cry out for help and assistance, for peace and a ceasing of the pain and sorrow. We can’t escape suffering. Like an abscessed tooth continually makes itself known, so does pain of any kind, either physical or emotional, easily consume us. If we lose a home or a job or a loved one, no one has to remind us to feel bad. It happens naturally. On the other hand, when we have quietly given up hope in the small world of our own families or in the wider world of our global family, it’s harder to remember to believe in resurrection. Jesus Christ rose from the dead; he conquered death and hopelessness. No matter the agony, the pain, the loss, the sorrow - there is always hope. We don’t feel it; we know it by faith. It is pure gift of God. Resurrection means that we hang onto a desire for life even when a pregnancy is a shock. Resurrection means that a child with physical or emotional difficulties is loved unconditionally. Resurrection means that a betrayal by a friend won’t be the last word in the relationship. Resurrection means that a necessary divorce doesn’t have to be an experience of hatred. Resurrection means that the limitations of aging in those we love is a moment of grace, not despair. Resurrection means that we believe Jesus meant it when he asked us to love our enemies. Resurrection means that differences of race or ethnicity are not differences in God’s eyes. God raised Jesus Christ from the dead. Because of this, in the words of William Butler Yeats, “All changed, changed utterly.” Sister McCarthy is an award- winning Catholic columnist and author. Resurrection reminds us to believe in hope always Hundreds attend Good Friday’s Veneration of the Cross in cathedral Catholic Outlook photos by Michael Brown Assisted by deacons, Bishop Edward J. Weisenburger led the Veneration of the Cross April 19 in St. Augustine Cathedral. After processing to the altar with the wooden cross, the bishop supported it as close to 400 worshippers stepped forward to touch, kiss and kneel before it. After the rite ended, the cross, lined with candles, was left near the foot of the altar.