Catholic Bishop Offers Easter Blessing

April 8, 2012 Updated Apr 8, 2012 at 8:30 PM EDT

By WKBW News

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April 8, 2012 Updated Apr 8, 2012 at 8:30 PM EDT

BUFFALO, N.Y. ( WKBW ) Buffalo's leader of the Catholic Church, Bishop Edward U. Kmiec celebrated Easter Mass at St. Joseph's Cathedral in downtown Buffalo Sunday.

The Mass at St. Joesph's was just one of thousands of services held in churches of all Christian faiths and believes for Easter Sunday 2012.

Easter Sunday is the day Christians believe Jesus Christ rose from the dead, after his death by crucifixion on Good Friday. Easter Sunday is considered one of the holiest days on the Christian calendar.

Bishop Edward Kmiec offered an Easter blessing for wkbw.com and Channel 7's Eyewitness News, and posted his thoughts on the official website of the Diocese of Buffalo, which appears below:

"This is the day the Lord has made. Let us rejoice and be glad!"
by: Bishop Edward U. Kmiec

My Dear Friends in Christ,

With our Lenten journey near its conclusion, we turn our focus from fasting, abstinence and almsgiving, to Christ’s suffering on the cross for us, His resurrection and the promise of eternal life.

During Holy Week, as we trace Christ’s steps in His painful passion, we give thanks for the selfless sacrifice He made for all of us. Christ’s words on the cross, “Father, into your hands I commend my spirit,” serve as a reminder that God’s only son gave His life so we could live.

This is a time of great joy for the Church. The Easter Vigil will mark the entrance into the faith of nearly 250 people in the Diocese of Buffalo who are journeying through the Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults. Join me in welcoming them into the full communion of the Church and encourage them to share their God-given gifts and talents in their new parishes and beyond.

In his Easter message a year ago, Pope Benedict XVI said, “Just as the sun’s rays in springtime cause the buds on the branches of the trees to sprout and open up, so the radiance that streams forth from Christ’s resurrection gives strength and meaning to every human hope, to every expectation, wish and plan.”

So together, may we all reflect Christ’s shining example of putting others first, living out every day as one of resurrection, of new life.

Happy Easter to one and all!