By Sarah Damm



 He is not here; for he has risen, as he said. Come, see the place where he lay.
~ Matthew 28:6

There is an ancient custom of greeting others on Easter with the following acclamation:

“Christ is risen.”

“He is risen indeed.”

This custom is called the Paschal Greeting. It is known not only in the Latin (or Roman) Rite of the Catholic Church but also in the Eastern Catholic, Eastern Orthodox, Oriental Orthodox, and Anglican churches.

This custom echoes the angel’s greeting to St. Mary Magdalene when she arrives at the empty tomb on that first Easter morning.

“He is not here; for he has risen…”  ~ Matthew 28:6

We read similar angelic words in the Gospels of Mark 16:6 and Luke 24:6. The Resurrection account is a little different in John, but again it includes angels ministering at the tomb.

After the angel proclaims the Resurrection, St. Mary Magdalene is instructed to share the good news with the apostles. In fact, St. Thomas Aquinas calls Mary Magdalene “an apostle to the apostles insofar as it was her task to announce our Lord’s resurrection to the disciples.”

Now, the Church adopts the angel’s words, passed onto St. Mary Magdalene, giving them to us to proclaim to one another:

“Christ is risen.”

“He is risen indeed.”

And oh, how this world could use this Paschal Greeting!

This world, so divided…

This world, so marked by fear…

This world, so desperate for truth, beauty, and goodness…

This world, so thirsty for life-giving water…

This world, so in need of the Savior.

But in order to evangelize our broken, hurting world, first, we must believe ourselves that Jesus Christ is risen indeed. For “if Christ has not been raised, your faith is vain” (1 Corinthians 15:17).

We must recall just how much His Resurrection changes our life, giving us new life in Baptism and a new identity in Christ. For “death is no longer an ending, but the entry into … eternal life for which we were created” (Eastertide Day by Day, 6).

Only then, with faith and confidence, can we follow St. Mary Magdalene’s example and share our resurrected Lord with those in need of this hope-filled truth:

“Christ is risen.”

“He is risen indeed.”

But how do we do that when we do not feel eloquent or adequate?

Thankfully, the Lord promises to “make [us] complete in everything good so that [we] may do his will … that which is pleasing in his sight, through Jesus Christ, to whom be the glory forever and ever” (Hebrews 13:21).

Here are some simple, practical ways to renew the hope of the Resurrection in your own heart and then share it with those around you:

  • Pray that the seeds the Lord planted in your heart this Lent will blossom and flourish during Eastertide.
  • Read about the early Christians to live out your faith with courage.
  • Greet family and friends with the Paschal Greeting.
  • Send Easter cards via “snail mail.”
  • Share truth, beauty, and goodness on social media.
  • Invite someone to Mass—then coffee afterward.

“Jesus Christ, emerging from the tomb, victorious over death, holds out His arms to us: Come, He says, resurrect with me.” ~ Jacques-Bénigne Bossuet


My Resurrected Jesus! I praise You and thank You for this glorious Easter season. Convict my heart. Renew my faith. So that I may courageously share the good news with those who need You. Amen.

Call to Action

Consider how you can share the joy of the Resurrection with others this Easter.


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