The season of Easter runs from April to June. It is a joyful period when we read from the Gospels the many occasions when Jesus appears to his apostles and disciples.
One of the gospels sees two of his disciples walking home, downhearted after the crucifixion and they come to realize that he has risen and their faith is restored.
In another Gospel reading at Easter we see Jesus describe how he is like a shepherd who has come to protect his people from harm, to lead them and to guide them to good pasture.
He says: “I came that they may have life and have it to the full.”
At this time of the year we have many celebrations in the parish and beyond and they all reflect these aspects of our faith, that God walks with us at every stage of our lives, and that he gives everything to us for our thriving.
This is the season of marriages when couples commit themselves to each other for the rest of their lives, and promise to be faithful in good times and bad and to welcome children into their family.
They come to ask for God’s blessing on their promises on their wedding day and in the future.
This is the season of baptisms, when new life is celebrated and new members of the Church are welcomed and blessed. This is the season of First Confessions and Communions.
When children reach the age of seven or eight they are given more structured teaching in the Catholic Faith as a preparation for receiving Holy Communion for the first time.
This is the season of Confirmations when young people are anointed by the bishop and make a profession of faith on their own behalf.
This is also the time of year when men are ordained as priests and commit themselves to the service of God and his Church.
All these celebrations are joyful events and reflect the belief of those Gospels of Easter, that God has given us life and faith and he wants us to live out that life with joy.