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Dear Friends,

Peace be with you, the Risen Christ said when he was first "experienced" by his confused, hopeful, gobsmacked followers.  We learn from this the astonishing phrase that despite what so much religious history has demonstrated and asserted, God is not against us, not mad at us, not waiting in the shadows to undo us.  Rather God is for us! For Jews at the time, drawing as they did on the prophetic writings, "Peace" meant "shalom," which, even in modern Hebrew, means "health to you." What Jesus said in his first "sermon" as the Resurrected One is still the basic greeting that Jews all over the world use to greet or say goodbye to one another!  Peace is the world moving towards health, integration, equality, justice, and righteousness.  Peace includes "peace of mind" but not on its own, rather, as a result of this move towards worldwide health.

Peace is God's intention but it is not a divine fiat it is an invitation.  As the Easter season continues to unfold embrace it.  "Peace to you" is something I say to myself and as I do I recognize the living Christ in me.  Only as I experience Christ saying that to me can I offer similar words to others with integrity.

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Health to you,
Fr. Allen Doerksen