May our Lord Jesus Christ himself, and God our Father, who has given us his love, comfort you and strengthen you in everything good that you do and say. His joy and hope be always with you. R/ And also with you.
Introduction by the Celebrant
People Of The Resurrection
No belief, no doctrine of faith is more fundamental to us Christians than that our Lord Jesus is risen and is alive. Together with this goes our belief, which seems much more difficult for the pragmatic people of our age to accept, that after death we will rise again. We are the people of a God of life. We are the people of the resurrection. We are the people who hope for an endless future of happiness and joy and love. Let us ask the Lord in the Eucharist today to strengthen this faith in us.
B. The God Of The Living At the death of someone very dear it is very hard for most people to accept that the beloved person is gone for ever. We wish to see the deceased one again. For a Christian, though death is a cruel separation, this is not a mere pious wish. For we believe that physical death is not the end; we believe in the resurrection. Just as Jesus died but rose from the dead, so will we rise again. This is a certainty of faith that gives meaning to life. God is a God of the living. We express this quiet but firm faith as we are gathered here around our Risen Lord.
Let us pray to the Lord to restore us to full life by forgiving us all our sins. (pause) Lord Jesus, you defeated death by rising to life again: Lord, have mercy. R/ Lord, have mercy. Jesus Christ, firstborn of the dead, you will raise us up to eternal life with you: Christ, have mercy. R/ Christ, have mercy. Lord Jesus, you want us to be people of the resurrection, who raise up the downcast and downtrodden: Lord, have mercy. R/ Lord, have mercy. Have mercy on us, Lord, and lift us above our sins. Lead us to the joys of everlasting life. R/ Amen.
Let us pray to the God of life (pause) God of the living, you have created us for life, love, and joy. As we share also in the cross of Jesus, in the pains and sorrows of life, keep our hope alive that your faithful love will have the final say, and that life will overcome death, for you have raised Jesus from the dead. Give us the firm longing and faith that you will raise us up with him and let this conviction be our strength every day of our life. We ask this through Christ our Lord. R/ Amen.
Liturgy of the Word
First Reading Introduction: God Will Raise Us Up To Live Forever Even before Christ's coming, women and youngsters chose to die rather than deny their faith in God and go against his law. For they were certain that God would raise them up and restore their tortured bodies.
Second Reading Introduction: Hope In God's Love Sustains Us
Paul encourages the Christians of Thessalonica to remain firm in faith and hope, even in trials, for God's love is eternal.
Gospel Introduction: The God Of The Living
As they did not believe in the resurrection, the sect of the Sadducees tried to ridicule belief in it. Jesus answers that they are too materialistic to understand the resurrection. Those raised up will live not as on earth but with a totally new life.
God is a God not of the dead but a God of the living. We pray to him for everything that makes life valuable and meaningful. Let us say: R/ Lord of life, hear our prayer. • That God may renew his blessings over all married couples in the whole Church, that their faithfulness and unity may be a sign of God's lasting love, let us pray: R/ Lord of life, hear our prayer. • That we may keep up the good fight against all that is deadly to Christian life: dehumanizing kinds of labor, suppression of freedom, paralyzing fear, love that is destroyed, let us pray: R/ Lord of life, hear our prayer. • That our beloved dead may live on in the life they gave us, in the good we do, and in the intimate love of God himself, let us pray: R/ Lord of life, hear our prayer. • That all suffering and dying people may share in our faith in the resurrection and find strength in the knowledge that God loves them in life and beyond death, let us pray: R/ Lord of life, hear our prayer. • That all those persecuted for the Lord's name may stand firm in their hope and inherit eternal life, let us pray: R/ Lord of life, hear our prayer. God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob; God of Jesus; God of the apostles and the saints; God of our forefathers and all our beloved ones; God of life, keep us all in your love, now and for ever. . R/ Amen. (Concluding prayer by Marcel Verhelst.)
Prayer over the Gifts
God our Father, we come before you with the gifts that you yourself have given us: bread and wine, food and drink, the symbols of life and joy. Change them into the gifts of everlasting life, the bread of life, Jesus himself, that from him we may learn to live for you and for one another, until you take us up with him into your own happiness without shadow. We ask you this through Christ our Lord. R/ Amen.
Introduction to the Eucharistic Prayer
Both in the preface and after the consecration, we express our firm faith and hope in the resurrection of the Lord and, thereby, in our own resurrection.
Invitation to the Lord's Prayer
In the name of Jesus the Lord we ask our heavenly Father to forgive us as we forgive those who hurt us. R/ Our Father...
Deliver us Lord, from every evil and from the fear of death. Grant us the serene peace of trust in the promise of Jesus, that he is the resurrection and the life and that he will raise us up on the last day. For we prepare with joy for the full coming of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. R/ For the kingdom...
Invitation to Communion
This is our Lord who says to us: "I am the resurrection and the life. All who believe in me will live and those who live and believe in me will never die." R/ Lord, I am not worthy...
Prayer after Communion
God of the living, you want us to live even beyond death as fully human and complete persons, and yet made totally different by your love. By this Eucharist give us a quiet but firm faith that life is meaningful and worthwhile, and that death is not the end but a completely new beginning. May this certainty encourage us to share our hope with those for whom life makes little sense. We ask this through Christ our Lord. R/ Amen.
We should be people of hope and joy, for Christ is risen. On account of our Risen Lord we are sure that we too shall rise with him one day. Let this certainty fill us with indestructible hope in life and in the love of God. And may Almighty God bless you: the Father, and the Son, and the Holy Spirit. R/ Amen. Let us go in the peace and joy of the Lord. R/ Thanks be to God.