As Christians around the world celebrate the Holy Triduum (the most important days of the life as a Christian), I thought of the recent post-synodal exhortation from Pope Francis (In simple terms, the recent letter from Pope Francis) called Chistus Vivit (Christ is alive). It is a letter addressed to the young people (not only in age, but also young at heart). I would recommend it as a good supplementary reading in this holy triduum or in the Easter season.
Three points from the extremely simple letter from a Pope (simple letters from Vatican are not so common) struck me. I would call it as three invitations, which are definitely not new, but radical and missionary. The are the invitations to be
- To be Child Like
- To be motherly
- To be Young
Just as a Child able to bring life in the dead areas of people with his/her innocenc and cheerfulness, Jesus brought life (and life in its abundance) to the humanity steeped in sin. As we celebrate Easter, I think this could be the first invitation for us — to bring freshness and joy in the lives around us and within me, by not rejecting suffering, but by transforming the suffering.
Pope Francis says, “ for anyone incapable of tears cannot be a mother. We want to weep so that society itself can be more of a mother, so that in place of killing it can learn to give birth, to become a promise of life.” Jesus suffered for the sins and redeemed them, gave new life.
The third invitation (as I trace) is to be Young. The crucified Christ is not dead, but alive. He lives. He says to the young man, “Young man, I say to you, Arise!” (Lk 7:14). More than young being a period of life (16 years to 29 years), it denotes the ability to renew, to grow again. It points to a freshness. In the words of Pope Francis, “ Jesus is risen, and he wants to make us sharers in the new life of the resurrection. He is the true youthfulness of a world (even it is applicable to catholic church) grown old, the youthfulness of a universe waiting “in travail” (Rom 8:22) to be clothed with his light and to live his life.”
Christ is eternally a child. Christ is eternally a mother. Christ is eternally young. This is the invitation to each one and to the church in this season to become a little more like this Young, motherly and child-like Jesus.