Shane Taylor
Head of Faith and Mission

As we continue in this great season of Easter, until the feast of Pentecost, we continue to challenge each other to be people of light, love, justice, peace, courage, compassion and joy.

We read in Mark 16:1-8

When the Sabbath was over, Mary Magdalene and Mary, the mother of James and Salome, bought spices, so that they might go and anoint him. And very early on the first day of the week, when the sun had risen, they went to the tomb. They had been saying to one another, ‘Who will roll away the stone for us from the entrance to the tomb?’ When they looked up, they saw that the stone, which was very large, had already been rolled back. As they entered the tomb, they saw a young man dressed in a white robe sitting on the right side, and they were alarmed. But he said to them, ‘Do not be alarmed; you are looking for Jesus of Nazareth, who was crucified. He has been raised; he is not here. Look, there is the place they laid him. But go, tell his disciples and Peter that he is going ahead of you to Galilee; there you will see him, just as he told you’. So, they went out and fled from the tomb, for terror and amazement had seized them, and they said nothing to anyone, for they were afraid.


In this passage, the author places the Marys at the tomb of the crucified Jesus. In their grief, the Marys come to honour, mourn and respect Jesus’ broken and mutilated body. To their shock, Jesus is not there! Yet, they are challenged to go and tell the others that Jesus has risen and will meet them again soon. We read they ‘went out and fled the tomb, for terror and amazement had seized them.’ These Greek words are usually interpreted as terror and fear. However, some theologians have interpreted the Greek as awe, which suggests that they will go to proclaim the risen Christ with a renewed sense of wonder. We are the Church in our times and our young Mercy women are challenged to recognise that women are the first to announce the risen Christ.

We might question what they were thinking. How did they experience both terror or awe and amazement or wonder? And we ask ourselves, what might have been our response?

Our world and our lives are filled with blessings and struggles – this is the human experience. But as Jesus people and as Mercy people, we are called by our Baptism, our dying and rising with Christ, to encounter this world with love, hope, joy, courage, compassion, justice and hospitality. We are called to be expressions of gratitude and challenge! And because of this, we are called to be agents of God’s love as we work together to build God’s kingdom.

So, during this great season of Eastertide, we seek these moments of God’s grace present in our lives and our world. How can we be people of wonder and awe for others, especially the poor? How will we, as Mercy people, become a community of difference in our care for our neighbours?

Image from: Reading Acts.com - The First Witness to the Resurrection