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Seeing the Word presents
Illuminating Easter
Easter 2016

Easter Sunday: The Resurrection Reflection

Easter is a season of movement and layers of divine revelation, which are reflected in this Resurrection illumination of John 20:1-23. This illumination tells the story of the journey from Good Friday to Easter Sunday. Starting on the left side of the illumination with the three crosses, our eye then travels to the empty tomb. There has been a physical movement of Jesus’ body from the cross to the tomb and from the tomb to the resurrection.

Read The Resurrection Reflection by by Tracy Dereszynski.

 

(Pictured) Resurrection, Donald Jackson, Copyright 2002, The Saint John's Bible, Saint John's University, Collegeville, Minnesota USA. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

 

Holy Saturday: Creation, Covenant, Shekinah, Kingdom Reflection

Holy Saturday confronts us and asks us to examine what we do with our uncertainties, unknowings, and seemingly void periods in our lives. It is not a day with less significance than its neighboring days, Good Friday and Easter Sunday. It carries its own weighted purpose, touching the edges of both Christ's death and Resurrection. Casting away any desire to dwell either in the past or in the future, may we rest fully in what today offers.

Read the Creation, Covenant, Shekinah, Kingdom Reflection by Rachel Gabelman.

 

(Pictured) Creation, Covenant, Shekinah, Kingdom, Donald Jackson, Copyright 2006, The Saint John's Bible, Saint John's University, Collegeville, Minnesota USA. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

 

Good Friday: Suffering Servant Reflection

This is the day to gaze on Love—a day, in the words of the Palmist, to “Be still and know that I am God” (Ps.46:11). What other stance can we take before this ancient text attributed to an anonymous poet who prophesied the fate of the Servant of God? Despised, discounted, and erased, the Suffering Servant descends into a terrifying darkness depicted in this illumination by ominous storm clouds. Yet, one cannot be with this text without hope. From the very first verse we hear, “See my Servant shall prosper; he shall be raised high and greatly exalted” (Is. 52:13).

Read the Good Friday reflection on Suffering Servant by Mary Frances Reis, VHM.

 

(Pictured) Suffering Servant, Donald Jackson, Copyright 2005, The Saint John’s Bible, Saint John’s University, Collegeville, Minnesota USA. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

 

Holy Thursday: Life in Community Reflection

Ask any monk or nun to name the best and the worst parts of their religious life and you will likely get the same answer: life together in community.

Community can be difficult, regardless of the form it takes. Living together, studying together, working together, praying together takes an immense amount of work. In an age such as ours, which prides itself on individualism and uniqueness, it is often—always, even!—a real challenge to share space with another.

Read the Holy Thursday reflection on Life in Community by Cody Maynus.

 

(Pictured) Life in Community, Aidan Hart with contributions from Donald Jackson, Copyright 2002, The Saint John’s Bible, Saint John’s University, Collegeville, Minnesota USA. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

 

WomanTakenInAdultery.jpgPalm Sunday: Courtyard of Mercy Reflection

This Palm Sunday visio divina reflection is brought to us by Barbara Sutton. Upon spending time at Saint William's Catholic Church in Naples, FL in their newly established Courtyard of Mercy, this reflection emerged.

In this Jubilee Year of Mercy, Holy Doors are opened so that those who enter through them "will experience the love of God who consoles, pardons, and instils hope" (The Face of Mercy, 3). As we transition into Holy Week, may we consider the doors that have opened before us, that have ushered us into this present moment. Leaving our worries and expectations behind, let us walk through the Doors of Mercy just as we are.

Read the Palm Sunday reflection on the Courtyard of Mercy by Barbara Sutton.

 

(Pictured) Left: Crucifixion, Donald Jackson, Copyright 2002, The Saint John's Bible, Saint John's University, Collegeville, Minnesota USA. Used by permission. All rights reserved.
Center: Sculpture by artist Scott Lampitt.
Right: Road to Emmaus, Sally Mae Joseph, Copyright 2002, The Saint John's Bible, Saint John's University, Collegeville, Minnesota USA. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

 

WomanTakenInAdultery.jpgWeek Five: Woman Taken in Adultery Reflection

In this fifth week of Lent, perhaps we have already let go of certain ways of thinking or acting that no longer serve us. But there is always more work in this area that can be done. What stones are you carrying with you? What words do you need to hear to convince you to let go of them? Let us pray that we may lay our stones down at the feet of Jesus. And may we grow in compassion toward ourselves and all those we encounter.

Read this week's reflection on the Woman Taken in Adultery by Chris Morgan.

 

(Pictured) Woman Taken in Adultery, Aidan Hart with contributions from Donald Jackson and Sally Mae Joseph, Copyright 2002, The Saint John's Bible, Saint John's University, Collegeville, Minnesota USA. Used by permission.  All rights reserved.

 

Week Four: The Prodigal Son Reflection

The prodigal son is said to have come to himself, or come to his senses, after not being able to eat the food that the pigs eat. We all have moments that cause us to awaken to our current reality and consider taking steps toward a new life. Let us be mindful of those times this Lent, praying that our affections might not be scattered toward anything that draws us away from God, ourselves, and our senses. Rather, may God grant us the grace to sense God's presence all around us. May we start to see how all of life is infused with the celebratory nature of our loving God, and participate in God's perpetual rejoicing over all who were lost but now have been found.

Read this week's reflection on The Prodigal Son by Chet Jechura.

 

(Pictured) Luke Anthology, Donald Jackson with contributions from Aidan Hart and Sally Mae Joseph, Copyright 2002, The Saint John's Bible, Saint John's University, Collegeville, Minnesota USA. Used by permission.  All rights reserved.

 

Week Three: I Am Sayings Reflection

The story of the burning bush and Moses' encounter with "I am who am" provides the foundation for the various "I am" sayings that appear in John's Gospel. Join us as we combine this passage, Exodus 3:1-8, 13-15, with this New Testament illumination. Allow this reading to take you deeper into your relationship with the almighty presence, the one who is. How do these four letters, YHWH, ground you in this season of Lent? Consider the ways in which this illumination sustains or challenges your predominant image of God.

Read this week's reflection on I Am Sayings by Pamela Larson Sherlock.

 

(Pictured) I Am Sayings, Thomas Ingmire, Copyright 2002, The Saint John's Bible, Saint John's University, Collegeville, Minnesota USA. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

 

Week Two: The Transfiguration Reflection

In the Gospel of Mark, Jesus treks up a mountain with Peter, James and John and becomes miraculously transfigured before them. Mark 9:3 says that "his clothes became dazzling white, such as no one on earth could bleach them." How often do we find ourselves questioning whether we are experiencing the miraculous power of God in our lives rather than just a mere coincidence? Let us reflect on the beauty of God's works, which are unparalleled by human works, and give God the glory.

Read this week's reflection on The Transfiguration by Rev. Mark Goodman.

 

(Pictured) The Transfiguration, Donald Jackson in collaboration with Aidan Hart, 2002. The Saint John's Bible, Order of Saint Benedict, Collegeville, Minnesota USA. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

 

Week One: Raising of Lazarus Reflection

In the Gospel of John, when Jesus hears that his friend has fallen ill he exclaims, "This illness does not lead to death; rather it is for God's glory, so that the Son of God may be glorified through it" (John 11:4).

If we find ourselves offended that Jesus chose not to prevent Lazarus from dying in the first place, let us pray that this Lent we let go of the desire to control what is not ours to control. Like Jesus who offers prayers of gratitude to the Father before summoning Lazarus from the tomb, let us set aside our demands and exchange them for dispositions of gratitude. May we be confident that God's will shall be done.

Read this week's reflection on Raising of Lazarus.

 

(Pictured) Raising of Lazarus, Donald Jackson, Copyright 2002, The Saint John’s Bible, Saint John’s University, Collegeville, Minnesota USA. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

 

 

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