In the Icon, Jesus Christ stands victoriously in the centre, robed in heavenly white. He is surrounded by a mandorla of star-studded light, representing the Glory of God. Christ is shown dramatically pulling Adam, the first man, from the tomb. Eve is to Christ’s left, hands held out in supplication, also waiting for Jesus to act. This humble surrender to Jesus is all Adam and Eve need to do, and all they are able to do. Christ does the rest, which is why He is pulling Adam from the tomb by the wrist, and not the hand. Surrounding the victorious Christ are John the Baptist and the Righteous of the Old Testament (Abel is shown as the young shepherd-boy). Those who predeceased Christ’s crucifixion descended to Hades (Limbo of the Fathers), where they patiently waited the coming of their Messiah. Now they are freed from this underworld, and mingle freely with Christ and His angels. And what of this underworld, Hades? It is shown in the aftershock of Christ’s descent into its heart – in utter chaos with locks broken open and nails bent (having suffered violence). And in the dark, under Christ’s cross, is Satan, the strong man bound by someone more powerful.
For those of us embroiled in the fight for innocent unborn life, we need to remember that our victory is assured. The Resurrection tells us so. And just like with the Resurrection of Our Lord on this Glorious Easter Sunday, the victory over abortion and its peddlers will come as sudden and miraculous as the moment when the stone was rolled away. In fact, it’s already happening and they don’t even know it. CHRIST IS RISEN! ALLELLUIA! ALLELLUIA!
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. (John 20:11-18)