After Mary Magdalene told Peter and John about what they had seen, the two of them ran to the tomb. Peter saw the signs but we are told that John went in and believed. We’re not told whether or not Peter believed just because he saw an empty tomb. I’m sure he did, but in Peter’s own account to Cornelius and his family, Peter describes with enthusiasm how he and others had met Jesus, they had eaten and drank with him. Here Peter is talking about believing because he encountered Jesus Risen.

I received a WhatsApp greeting from a friend with a lovely picture of Jesus rising out of the tomb and in his greeting my friend said – and the Risen Jesus is also here in this house. The words struck me.

Our faith is centred on Jesus risen. We need to be able to say we meet him. Where do we find him – certainly in the Word of God, in the Eucharist, but also in the poor, in each other and also when we gather together in love for one another.

This year we are celebrating Easter in the middle of the Coronavirus. People are restricted in movements, cocooned and generally much of the day at home. That can be hard. But we remember that Jesus moved into the Resurrection through the Cross of Good Friday. Every time we experience difficulty, loneliness, time lying heavy on our hands, we can think of Jesus, unite our suffering with his, continue to love, allowing him take us into the peace that he wants to give us as Risen from the dead. The Kingdom of God comes into every solitude or emptiness when we open to the Risen Christ.

In small or big ways, we can all do acts of love for our neighbour, putting ourselves aside for the sake of others. Each time we do, we are moving from death to resurrection.  Though we mightn’t see it with our human eyes, we can see him with the eyes of faith.

Christ is Risen. Rising out of death in loving the neighbour, he is dressed is the white, blue and green in hospitals and nursing homes tending to the elderly, sick and dying.

Christ is Risen. Rising out of death in loving the neighbour, he is there in our local shops as the workers work hard to restock the shelves and greet us at the cashier.

Christ is Risen. Rising out of death in loving the neighbour, he is there in the volunteer initiatives of people going the extra mile, doing the groceries for neighbours, collecting prescriptions, doing messages for the those alone.

Christ is Risen. Rising out of death in loving the neighbour, he is there in the lorry drivers and delivery vans, transporting goods that we need.

Christ is Risen. Rising out of death in loving the neighbour, he is in the public health authorities and department officials, the researchers and politicians, working around the clock to combat the spread of the virus.

Christ is Risen. Rising out of death in loving the neighbour, he is in the many women and men, working in media outlets, going to all lengths, despite restrictions, to keep us linked to one another and the wider world.

Christ is Risen. Rising out of death in loving the neighbour, he is in the teachers and students, creatively adapting to new circumstances, making sure Education keeps going.

Christ is Risen. Rising out of death in loving the neighbour, he is in family life in the many small and big acts of patience, kindness and tenderness.

Christ is Risen. Rising out of death in loving the neighbour, he is in you and me, each time we make the effort to be the first to love in giving of ourselves.

Christ is Risen. Rising out of death in loving the neighbour, he is among us when we love our neighbour as ourselves.