16 Apr Passion Week Readings | Resurrection Sunday
Saturday evening, when the Sabbath ended, Mary Magdalene, Mary the mother of James, and Salome went out and purchased burial spices so they could anoint Jesus’ body. Very early on Sunday morning, just at sunrise, they went to the tomb. On the way they were asking each other, “Who will roll away the stone for us from the entrance to the tomb?” But as they arrived, they looked up and saw that the stone, which was very large, had already been rolled aside.
When they entered the tomb, they saw a young man clothed in a white robe sitting on the right side. The women were shocked, but the angel said, “Don’t be alarmed. You are looking for Jesus of Nazareth, who was crucified. He isn’t here! He is risen from the dead! Look, this is where they laid his body. Now go and tell his disciples, including Peter, that Jesus is going ahead of you to Galilee. You will see him there, just as he told you before he died.”
The women fled from the tomb, trembling and bewildered, and they said nothing to anyone because they were too frightened.
— Mark 16:1-8
That Sunday evening the disciples were meeting behind locked doors because they were afraid of the Jewish leaders. Suddenly, Jesus was standing there among them! “Peace be with you,” he said. As he spoke, he showed them the wounds in his hands and his side. They were filled with joy when they saw the Lord! Again he said, “Peace be with you. As the Father has sent me, so I am sending you.” Then he breathed on them and said, “Receive the Holy Spirit. If you forgive anyone’s sins, they are forgiven. If you do not forgive them, they are not forgiven.”
— John 20:19-23
Resurrection Sunday at a Glance
• Some women arrive at Jesus’ tomb near dawn, probably with Mary Magdalene arriving first (Matthew 28:1; Mark 16:1-3; Luke 24:1; John 20:1).
• Mary and the other women, instead of finding Jesus’ body, are met by two angels, one of whom announces that Jesus has resurrected (Matthew 28:2-7; Mark 16:4-7; Luke 24:2-7).
• The women, feeling a mix of fear and joy, leave the garden. Although initially reluctant to say anything to anyone about what had happened, they later change their mind and go to tell the disciples. It is likely Mary Magdalene rushes ahead to tell Peter and John before the other women arrive (Mark 16:8; Matthew 28:8; John 20:2).
• The other women, still en route to tell the disciples, are met by Jesus, who confirms their decision to tell the remaining disciples and promises to meet them in Galilee; later, the women arrive and deliver the news to the disciples — Jesus is risen (Matthew 28:9-10; Luke 24:8-11).
• After hearing Mary Magdalene’s report, Peter and John rush to the tomb and discover it is indeed empty (John 20:3-10; Luke 24:12).
• That afternoon Jesus appears to Cleopas and a friend on the road to Emmaus; later Jesus appears to Peter (Luke 24:13-35).
• That evening Jesus appears to the disciples (minus Thomas) in a house (with locked doors) in Jerusalem (Luke 24:36-43; John 20:19-23).
You can download a full timeline of events for the upcoming week here.
Music is an important part of reflection and worship. As you spend some time reflecting on this text and these events, we encourage you to listen to these hymns.