It’s startling to put birth and death together in the way St. Paul does here. We are used to thinking of the dead as the ones at the end of life, those who have completed and left it. Paul unwinds all that and shows us death from the other way around: “firstborn from the dead.” Death is not the end of all, but the real beginning. Especially when the experience of death is close to us, this news makes all the difference.
How do we know it’s so? Because Christ has been raised from death and opened the path to eternal life. This is both the eyewitness of the apostles, and the consistent witness of the Church down through the ages. No wonder the connection of the “firstborn from the dead” with the Church is so crucial here. We need each other, we need God-with-us, to show us the way through death to life.
Living Faith provides brief daily Catholic devotions based on one of the Mass readings of the day. Published new each quarter, these reflections are written by women and men from a variety of backgrounds - lay people as well as clergy and religious. Learn more.
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