calendar April 18, 2011 in Bishop messages

Vivet! He Lives!


Christ has Risen! He is Risen Indeed! 

This is our Easter victory cry!  See how God raised Jesus from the dead! Jesus Christ, the first fruits of our resurrected life in Him.

On Easter Sunday we read Psalm 118, a song of victory, hope and gratitude for God’s mercies.

Psalm 118 is forever connected to the events of Holy Week. The words of this psalm were shouted as Jesus entered Jerusalem on Palm Sunday: “Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord.” (vs. 26)

This psalm was read at the Passover meal, hosted by Christ himself at the last supper: “The stone which the builder rejected has become the chief cornerstone.” (vs. 22) “This is the Lord’s doing; it is marvelous in our sight.” (vs. 23)

This psalm was Martin Luther’s favorite, one he claimed as “mine.” Particularly these words: “I shall not die, but shall live and recount the deeds of the Lord.” (vs. 17)

Towards the end of Dr. Luther’s life his wife, Katherine, commissioned a stonemason to build a new entrance to their house. At the top of the arch the chief stone was inscribed with the Latin word Vivet, which means “He Lives!”  It was meant to remind everyone who went out or came in that Christ lives!

May we all be blessed with the assurance of resurrection through Christ, for our daily living, and in our going out and in our coming in. “This is the day our Lord has made, let us rejoice and be glad in it.” (vs. 24)

On behalf of the staff, synod council, and deans of the Southeastern Pennsylvania Synod of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America, thank you and bless you for all you do to make Christ known, and for your ministry in His Holy Name.


With and in Christ,

The Rev. Claire S. Burkat