by Nadia Ramoutar MMM Communications Coordinator Ireland 03.04.2023
When I was a little girl growing up in Dublin, there was, and still is, a tradition of children getting beautifully decorated chocolate Easter eggs that you cannot have until Easter Sunday. One year, I recall waking up on Easter to see that my chocolate eggs which I had waited to have with so much challenge, were not only opened but sampled. The beautiful foil was torn and big chunks of the chocolate were mysteriously gone.
A quick investigation of his children led my father to realise my sister Eve who is two years older than me had raided her siblings’ boxes during the night. Her nightdress with the chocolate smudges on them and marks along with her sick tummy had singled her out. I was so angry. I felt betrayed. I still remind her of this many years later. The funny part was when my dad asked her why she did it she said one of the Easter eggs were calling me during the night and said “Eat me, but I didn’t know which one was calling me, so I tried them all.”
On a more serious note, I recall my own sense of injustice in learning the events that led up to Jesus’ crucifixion. At an early age, I was so upset that Jesus was treated so badly and was not protected more. I didn’t get the big picture yet of the importance of Easter. I was unable to process how this was one of the most important aspects of Jesus’ whole life. I recall my own young son sobbing and wailing “…but they murdered Jesus.” Not an easy thing to explain to a small, devastated child.
It is hard sometimes for us to see the hand of Jesus in any injustice. It seems as if there should be no negativity or challenges. Many of us hold onto a naïve idea that bad things should never happen to good people. We might feel that a spiritual life is an easy life and that those of us working to do good in the world should not face challenges.
As I reflect on Easter now, I see many gifts in the course of events. I have come to really treasure that Jesus appeared to women first. I know that all the Gospels concur on this. It is something that I have marvelled at considering the status of women in the world at the time. Now, we know this was not by accident at all. Women were a major part of Jesus’ ministry and supported him in many ways during his life. His great love for his mother and other women in his life are noted again and again in the gospels.
We see that women are still a major part of Jesus’ ministry. I, for one, feel very fortunate to work with the MMM Sisters in their efforts to make the world better for the most vulnerable. I feel blessed with a great love for Jesus and I get the biggest lesson of all that he taught us – how to forgive. “Father, forgive them, they know not what they do” are words that we can use today as we watch the news and as we forgive those who may betray us, disappoint us or steal our favourite chocolate.