Easter Message 2022
Resurrection of Christ means a bright future for humanity
if it proceeds according to His teaching
Patriarch Louis Raphael Card. Sako
Easter celebration this year reminds us, more than any other time, of God’s love for mankind, His closeness and His vast mercy to all, through the resurrection of Christ, which is an affirmation for brighter future and salvation of humanity, as long as it proceeds according to His teaching. His resurrection comes “to shine from heaven on all those who live in the dark shadow of death, to guide our steps into the path of peace” (luke 1/79).
Jesus’ resurrection is a consolation and a hope for us. Moreover, it is a “deposit” for the resurrection of all those who believe in Him. Ultimately His Gospel is a message of hope, reminding us of important things in our lives. Jesus’ passion is a new birth, a glorious resurrection. and establishment of a new congregation (the Church).
Resurrection is an invitation to enter into a new era, and a new covenant, in which we love each other sincerely, and cooperate enthusiastically with impartiality, to be always present next to each other, following the example Jesus’ disciples, whose love brought them together when He was risen and shared what they owned freely.
I wonder why the Christian spiritual values disappeared in most of our societies. What have we done with the teaching of Christ, who called us to love everyone, including our enemies? What have we done with the values of fraternity, peace, stability, respect and the common good? It is a shame that our spirituality is getting poor. Why did our societies, especially the Western ones, abandon Christian Values?
The Church must work hard to restore these values so that our world may enjoy peace, security, justice in a spirit of love. The Church should reflect the light of the Gospel on the current affairs that shape the life of our societies. Otherwise, it will remain “idle – Out of order”.
Believers of all religions should communicate with every human being, regardless of his religion, sect or nationality, to reach an understanding and fraternal cooperation, fulfilling Christ’s statement “you are all brothers” which has been reflected in Pope Francis’ message “We are all brothers”, encouraging us to build a new world and a new civilization that defends human fraternity, human dignity and mutual respect.
Every believer in God, and Christians in particular, must reject the logic of war-death because it crosses with the logic of love, peace and life. Jesus is calling every one of us, as He manifests Himself to St. Thomas and called Mary Magdalene by her name. Thus, the only way for us to be good Christian is by following His example on daily basis to reach and live “resurrection”.
Presidents, religious authorities and the whole society should work hard to end the Russian – Ukrainian war by resolving problems through diplomatic means rather than fighting. Enough wars, casualties, grief, destruction, migration, poverty and diseases. There should be an end for the production of lethal weapons here and there. Isn’t “natural” that such evil act creates guilt conscience for the world’s political officials? Since every honest person would have reject this hell.
We are going through the “dangerous moment” that may lead to a devastating world war (God forbid), which will have serious impact on the entire political process. Therefore, I invite all believers, Christians and Muslims (as they are currently fasting Ramadan) and Jews as well to look at the tragedy in Ukraine and Middle East countries, their humiliation, and the “harsh” dismantling of its beautiful mosaic.
Finally, as an Iraqi citizen and a Christian religious leader I cannot ignore seeing Iraqis extremely tired and exhausted due to the current situation. Hence, I call upon the Iraqi political forces to assume national responsibility by adopting the language of dialogue and mutual understanding, which is the only way to get out of the troubling “political blockage” in order to form a national government capable of real reform as soon as possible.
Hoping that the light emanating from Jesus tomb enlightens our minds and spirits, so we may rise with him, and let our human senses enjoy (once in our life time) freedom, solidarity and fraternity.
Wishing you all a blessed Easter and peace on earth