"Easter Week 1982"

Small green shoots emerge from the snow.

The light green shoots of blossoms-to-have-been are out of sight under the drifting snow. Gale force winds are rattling the old house. The temperature is far below freezing. Nature is not cooperating with preparations for Easter.

The storm evokes the spiritual quality of Good Friday more than Easter. New life will appear, but not without strife, not without some losses to the coldness which returns as inevitably as spring. And who can say that the sun will always climb again on Easter morning? Isn't it at least possible that the coldness has more staying power than the warmth?

The seasons are more reliable in these matters than human nature. For we, individually and collectively, can choose between love and indifference, between commitment and self-absorption, between peace and war. And we have often chosen the coldness.

Maybe the ancients were right. Maybe the spring comes because we bid it to come in our celebrations. Maybe it is the telling and the retelling of the stories that enable us to see that hope still lives and that we can carry it forward.

The stories make it clear that God does not do it alone. The motions of the spheres will produce a sunrise, but the springtime of the spirit, the springtime of love and justice and peace, depends on our human response to the gift of life.

Let us tell the stories again.