Joshua Schipper
Video/Digital Content/Graphic Design Producer
April 11, 2024 // Bishop

Bishop Implores Honor to the Risen Christ at Holy Hour

Joshua Schipper
Video/Digital Content/Graphic Design Producer

Bishop Rhoades led the monthly Little Flower Holy Hour for Vocations on Tuesday, April 2, at the St. Mother Theodore Guerin Chapel in Fort Wayne. There, he exposed the Blessed Sacrament, spoke of the disciples’ response to the Resurrection, and led those gathered in praying the Rosary.

In his homily during the Holy Hour, Bishop Rhoades discussed the story from the Gospel where Mary Magdalene encounters Jesus in the garden but does not recognize Him.

Photos by Joshua Schipper

“I think it’s important to hear [this Gospel reading] as we adore Our Lord the Blessed Sacrament to connect our adoration to the mystery of Our Lord’s resurrection. This is really, really important,” Bishop Rhoades said.

He continued to talk about how each of the disciples had their own individual “journey of faith” in coming to believe in the resurrection of Jesus. Beginning by recounting the reading where Mary Magdalene found Jesus in the garden, he moved to the story of John and Peter that followed.

John, having outrun Peter to the tomb, let Peter enter the tomb first, as he was the leader of the disciples.

“The Gospel told us that John saw and believed – [that was] all he needed,” Bishop Rhoades said. “He was the disciple whom Jesus loved, the Beloved Disciple. He saw the tomb was empty. He saw the linen cloths. … And he believed.”

Bishop Rhoades said he thinks John was the only disciple who believed right away, and he mentioned that Peter believed that night when Jesus appeared to the disciples in the Upper Room.

Speaking of Thomas, the final apostle to believe in the Resurrection, Bishop Rhoades mentioned a simple practice for Catholics to adopt. In the Gospel, when prompted by Jesus to touch His wounds, Thomas, finally coming to believe in the Risen Lord, said, “My Lord and my God.”

Bishop Rhoades said that, as he was preparing for his first holy Communion, his teacher taught him to quietly exclaim Thomas’ profession of faith.

“I still do that,” he said, “but now I stand here actually holding the Lord.”

Elaborating on the experience of Mary Magdalene, Bishop Rhoades said she had gone to the tomb on Easter Sunday to mourn, similar to how someone visits a cemetery after losing a loved one. She, however, had no hope of the Resurrection.

Despite seeing the empty tomb, Bishop Rhoades explained, Mary first thought that robbers had taken Jesus’ body. Even when Jesus appeared to her, she thought He was the gardener. It took Jesus calling her by name to believe.

Bishop Rhoades compared her response, “teacher,” to Thomas’ profession, saying that Mary “needed something more.” While recognizing Jesus as teacher, He is much more than that, Bishop Rhoades explained.

“That’s kind of why Jesus said: ‘Stop holding on to me. Don’t cling to me.’”

Bishop said, like Mary and Thomas, everyone today is at a different stage in their relationship with the Lord. He encouraged those gathered to persevere in their faith like the disciples did after the Resurrection.

He related this experience of the disciples to the exposed Blessed Sacrament on the altar, saying that Jesus is “hidden, veiled in the Eucharist under the signs of bread and wine,” and recalled the story of St. Francisco Marto, one of the Fatima children, who referred to the Lord as “my hidden Jesus.”

He finished his homily by comparing the death and resurrection of Christ in terms of the Mass. While at the Mass, there is a focus on the Eucharistic sacrifice – the death of Christ, a death that is “crowned by His resurrection.”

“Notice we’re obliged to go to Mass, not on the day Jesus died … but we are obliged to go on Sunday, the first day of the week: the day of the Resurrection.”

After the Holy Hour, Bishop Rhoades joined several young adults for appetizers at the Hoppy Gnome and chatted with them about the faith. One young adult shared to Bishop Rhoades about his journey to the faith, as well as his introduction to the Mass.

* * *

The best news. Delivered to your inbox.

Subscribe to our mailing list today.