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Were You There?

Peg Tichacek (Wichita, Kansas  USA)


April 5th, 2024 - Notre Dame of Jerusalem Center


Where are you in the Holy Land?  Did you walk where Jesus walked? Were you at Calvary where he hung on the cross, dripped blood, and died? Did you see his mother at his side with a sword piercing her heart? Did you enter the tomb where Jesus rose again on the third day?  


Yes, I have been there, in 2021 after several delays due to the pandemic. Again, in 2023 when it was crowded with people from many, many nations. 



During one visit to the Holy Sepulchre, I remember overhearing a priest ask his group as they waited to enter the tomb, “Where is Jesus?” They strained to see through the crowd. “No, no” the priest said, “he is no longer in the tomb because the tomb is empty”! Hw spoke of the message the Angel gave Mary Magdalene and the women on Easter morning, the message that changed history and the world, that even today is celebrated for 50 days because of the magnificant news that Jesus is alive!  The good news that he now dwells now in our hearts and the Eucharist and is with us as he promised,  still ministering to and through those who believe!   


My plans are to return in 2024 on a  pilgrimage with Archbishop Naumann and the Northern Luentendency Equestrian Order of the Holy Sepulchre.  We’ll see. 


Meanwhile I go to the Holy Land often.  I go when I hear painful news of the conflicts there and throughout the whole world. I go when my memories transport me there and the gospel readings too. I go during these 50 days to rejoice and sing Alleluia for the faith, hope, and love that fills my heart regardless of where my feet are because I’m part of a family of faith.    


Apostolic Nuncio Yllana and Fr David Steffy (chargé) gathered with the local scouts


Are you there?  I am, to join in with Cardinal Pizzabella and Pope Francis as they call us to pray and  with Mary and Jesus who to this day intercede for suffering in our world. I pray with faith, hope, and love and the gift of the Holy Spirit to pray through me when God’s ways, mercy and love are so far beyond mine.  He is risen.  Alleluia!  Alleluia!

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