They take the body of Jesus to its resting place. The huge stone over the tomb is the final sign of the permanence of death. In this final act of surrender, who would have imagined this tomb would soon be empty or that Jesus would show himself alive to his disciples, or that they would recognize him in the breaking of bread? Oh, that our hearts might burn within us, as we realize how he had to suffer and die so as to enter into his glory, for us.
Reader: We adore you, O Christ, and we bless you.
All: Because by your holy cross
you have redeemed the world.
I pause to contemplate this act of closure on his life.
In solidarity with all humanity,
his body is taken to its grave.
I stand for a moment outside this tomb.
This final journey of his life has shown me
the meaning of his gift of himself for me.
This tomb represents every tomb I stand before with fear,
in defeat, struggling to believe it could ever be empty.
In the fullness of faith in the Risen One,
given by his own Holy Spirit,
I express my gratitude for this way of the cross.
I ask Jesus, whose hands, feet and side
still bear the signs of this journey,
to grant me the graces I need
to take up my cross to be a servant of his own mission.
when to dust my dust returneth,
grant a soul that to thee yearneth
in thy paradise a place.