Holy Week is the most important time in the Church calendar; on Easter Sunday there is standing room only in churches around the world. That’s the way it usually is, but this year it will be very different. The churches will be empty — in fact, the doors will be locked.
The quarantine and self-isolation brought on by Covid-19 has changed us in the past couple of months. We are afraid for our safety and that of our families. We are apprehensive of what the future holds, and we are feeling the effects of being shut away from those we love.
Easter will be very different this year.
But perhaps it will be more like the very first Resurrection Sunday — take a look at JOHN 20:11-18
Now Mary stood outside the tomb crying. As she wept, she bent over to look into the tomb and saw two angels in white, seated where Jesus’ body had been, one at the head and the other at the foot. They asked her, “Woman, why are you crying? “They have taken my Lord away,” she said, “and I don’t know where they have put him.” At this, she turned around and saw Jesus standing there, but she did not realize that it was Jesus. He asked her, “Woman, why are you crying? Who is it you are looking for?” Thinking he was the gardener, she said, “Sir, if you have carried him away, tell me where you have put him, and I will get him.” Jesus said to her, “Mary.” She turned toward him and cried out in Aramaic, “Rabboni!” (which means “Teacher”). Jesus said, “Do not hold on to me, for I have not yet ascended to the Father. Go instead to my brothers and tell them, ‘I am ascending to my Father and your Father, to my God and your God.’” Mary Magdalene went to the disciples with the news: “I have seen the Lord!” And she told them that he had said these things to her.
Mary Magdalene was alone at the tomb when Jesus appeared to her. He did not appear to a cathedral overflowing with worshippers.
He told her not to touch Him (regardless of the context, you can’t help but see that parallel)
She ran and told the disciples that Jesus was alive. She didn’t find them in the streets celebrating. Verse 19 tells us that they were secluded, hiding with the doors locked, afraid for their own lives. That was where Jesus found them.
And that is where He will find us this Easter morning. Our little families, taking refuge in our own homes, fearful and yet at the same time joyful because He has risen.