The Garden: My Easter greetings to you!

For was it not in a garden that a woman, together with a man, fell away from God?
Was it not in a garden that our first parents, after having first rejected God’s abundant love, wept?
Was it not in a garden that the expectation of death first reared its ugly head as the wages of sin?

The events of Good Friday centred on a hill called Golgotha but ended in a nearby garden, where Joseph of Arimathea and Nicodemus bound Jesus’ body in linen cloths and laid it in a tomb.

Once more….
A woman
A garden
The sound of weeping
The expectation of death

Mary Magdalene, a daughter of Eve, turns and sees a man standing there. This man asks: “Woman, why are you weeping? Whom are you seeking?” Mary supposes Him to be a gardener.
And yet, is she really that far off? Was not the first Adam—the caretaker of Eden?
Here now is Jesus—the second Adam—walking in a garden in the cool of the new day, revealing Himself to the daughter of Eve.

In response to the Gardener, Mary replies: “Sir, if You have carried Him away, tell me where You have laid Him, and I will take Him away.”
The Good Shepherd calls his sheep by name. “Mary.” Is there a more beautiful thing in all the world than this? That Jesus calls someone by name? Mary has seen the stone rolled away. She has seen the empty tomb. She has seen the linen cloths lying there. But seeing isn’t always believing. Because “faith comes from hearing” (Romans 10:17), Jesus speaks her name. “Mary.”

Unlike the first garden, however, what Jesus brings this daughter of Eve in this garden is…
     not judgment … but justification,
          not sin … but righteousness,
               not death … but life.
Jesus completely reverses and totally undoes the fall.
As it is written: “As in Adam all die, so also in Christ shall all be made alive” (1 Corinthians 15:22).

Jesus is not only the Gardener, He is also the Seed which is planted in the garden. He himself said : “Unless a grain of wheat falls into the earth and dies, it remains alone; but if it dies, it bears much fruit” (John 12:24).
So it is that Jesus was crucified and planted in the garden tomb. And sure enough, this Seed sprouts forth with new life and bears much fruit!

May you hear the Risen Lord call your name in a new and renewing way this Easter Season!
Christ is Alive, Alleluia, Alleluia!
Χριστός Ανέστη! Αληθώς Ανέστη!
Sr. M. Louise, pddm