Children's Reading: John 20:1-9
Violet Finds New Life
What new life have you found this spring?
Early Sunday morning while it was still dark, Mary Magdelene walked to the tomb. There she saw the stone that covered the tomb was removed. She ran to Simon Peter and the disciple Jesus loved. "They've taken the Lord from the tomb," she exclaimed, "and we don't know where they have put his body!"
Peter and the other disciple left and started to go to the tomb. At first, the two ran side by side. But, the other disciple ran ahead of Peter and got to the tomb first. He bent down and saw the linen strips used to tie the body for burial just lying there. But he did not go into the tomb. Peter came behind him and entered the tomb. He saw the linen strips and the piece of cloth used to tie around the head. That cloth was not with the others, but was in another place and had kept its shape. Then, the other disciple entered the tomb and believed what he saw. 9 But they still did not understand that the Bible said, "The Christ needed to rise from the dead."
Early Easter morning, Violet ran to the living room. "Where is it?" she wondered. But she didn't see a basket, or candy, or chocolate bunnies, or anything that looked like Easter. She quickly went from the living to the kitchen to one room after another. Nothing looked like Easter.
Finally she woke her Father up. "Where is it?" Violet demanded. "Where is the Easter surprise you promised?"
"You'll see," her father whispered. "You get the surprise after Easter egg hunt."
After Mass, all Violet's friends talked about the candy and chocolate they ate. They showed off their new Easter clothes. And they eagerly waited for the Easter egg hunt.
Across the street at the park, a sign announced the great hunt. Violet and her friends ran to starting line by the park play area. "Go to that big tree," Violet's father told her. "There's lots of Easter eggs just beyond."
At the count of three, all the children dashed to find the eggs. But Violet went directly to the tree. Yes, she found lots of eggs to fill her basket. But, then, she looked up with eyes wider than her face. A puppy ran up to Violet and licked her face without end. Around the puppy's collar she found a note. "Violet," the note began, "This is your surprise of new life. Happy Easter, from Dad and Mom."
With the puppy by the leash, Violet flew tug her parents. "Thank you!" She said, as she kissed and hugged them.
Just like Violet found new life in her puppy, the women who visited the tomb of Jesus found new life. They found Jesus alive, never to die again.
Easter celebrates more than candy and eggs and new puppies. Easter celebrates a season of spring that will never end. Happy Easter.