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A Witness to the Resurrection

The Resurrection is the only miracle of Jesus Christ the Gospels provide no eye-witness account.

The Annunciation and the Nativity

When the Holy Spirit overshadowed the Virgin Mary at the Annunciation, there was Mary and the Angel Gabriel. At the Nativity of the Lord, there is Mary, Joseph, the shepherds, and a host of angels. In the multiplication of the loaves and fishes, the freeing of the demoniacs, the healing of the blind and the hemorrhaging woman, several witnesses are mentioned. So is the case when Jesus brought back from death to life Jairus’ daughter, the widow from Naim’s son, and Jesus’ friend, Lazarus.  

The Crucifixion and Burial

When Jesus died on the cross on Friday, his friends took him down, anointed his body with oils, wrapped Him in a linen burial cloth, placed Him in a tomb, and left. There were temple guards stationed at the tomb entrance covered by a large stone, but three days later, they were as astonished as the others who came on Sunday morning to find the stone moved and the tomb empty. All that was inside the tomb was the folded-up face cloth placed to one side and the linen burial shroud that had wrapped the body of Jesus.

Why would God not arrange for a witness to the Resurrection; his Son’s great defeat over death that merited our salvation?

I believe he has.

The Shroud of Turin and the Catholic Faith

A wonderful fruit to comparing the Passion and Death of Jesus with the Shroud of Turin and the mysterious image of the man it bears are the deep insights I have discovered into the Catholic faith.

Consider with me the Sacrament of the Eucharist.

Jesus instituted the Sacrament of the Eucharist on the Thursday night of Passover that has become known as the Last Supper:  

"[Jesus] took the bread, said the blessing, broke it, and gave it to them, saying, “This is my body, which will be given for you; do this in memory of me.” And likewise the cup after they had eaten, saying, “This cup is the new covenant in my blood, which will be shed for you, (Luke 22-19-20)."

The Church responds to our Lord’s command to “do this in memory of me” through the Holy Mass, specifically during the Epiclesis. The Catechism of the Catholic Church explains,

“The Epiclesis is the intercession in which the priest begs the Father to send the Holy Spirit, the Sanctifier, so that the offerings may become the Body and Blood of Jesus Christ and the faithful, by receiving them, may themselves become a living offering to God, (CCC, no.1105). The Holy Spirit’s transforming power in the liturgy hastens the coming of the kingdom and consummation of the mystery of salvation, (CCC, no. 1107).”

We can dive deeper into contemplation knowing that the communion host is made of only two ingredients: wheat and water, and in realizing it is at the Epiclesis, the Holy Spirit descends upon the elements of bread and wine just as he descended on the Virgin Mary at the Annunciation as proclaimed by the Archangel Gabriel (Luke 1:35), The holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you.

Scripture Sheds Light on How God May Be Revealing This

Gospel of John 12:23-34
Jesus answered them, “The hour has come for the Son of Man to be glorified. Amen, amen, I say to you, unless a grain of wheat falls to the ground and dies, it remains just a grain of wheat; but if it dies, it produces much fruit.

Gospel of John 4:10-14
Jesus answered and said to her, “If you knew the gift of God and who is saying to you, ‘Give me a drink,’ you would have asked him and he would have given you living water.” […]  whoever drinks the water I shall give will never thirst; the water I shall give will become in him a spring of water welling up to eternal life.

Can it be that the Catholic faithful in receiving the Eucharist in full communion with Jesus, Body, Blood, Soul and Divinity, at every Holy Sacrifice of the Mass serves as the witness to the Resurrection of Jesus?

Perhaps the Eucharist faithfully received by the communicant was long ago prophesied . . .

Ezekial 36:24-29
I will take you away from among the nations, gather you from all the lands, and bring you back to your own soil. I will sprinkle clean water over you to make you clean; from all your impurities and from all your idols I will cleanse you. I will give you a new heart, and a new spirit I will put within you. I will remove the heart of stone from your flesh and give you a heart of flesh. I will put my spirit within you so that you walk in my statutes, observe my ordinances, and keep them. You will live in the land I gave to your ancestors; you will be my people, and I will be your God. I will deliver you from all your impurities. I will summon the grain and make it plentiful; I will not send famine against you.

Witnessing the Resurrection

Perhaps the miracle of the Resurrection is witnessed in and through every faithful disciple who believes Jesus is who he says he is, and freely chooses to follow him in faith. If so, then the tomb from which our Lord defeated death and rose to victory is every “stony” heart who receives the dead grain of wheat transformed by living water. Disciples are sent forth from Mass at the final blessing to bear witness to the Resurrection in, with and through faith-filled lives so as to “hasten the coming of the kingdom and consummation of the mystery of salvation.”

The Eucharistic Veil

Saint Peter Julian Eymard, called “the Apostle to the Eucharist” explains the supernatural power of the Eucharist similarly,

“The Eucharistic veil perfects our faith. Faith is a pure act of the mind, disengaged from the senses. Here the senses are not brought into play, they have no action. It is only the mystery of Jesus Christ in which the senses have to keep absolute silence. In all the others, in the Incarnation, the Redemption, they behold an infant God, a dying God. In this mystery nothing is present to them but an impenetrable veil. Here, faith alone must act. The Eucharist is the kingdom of faith.”

This means then that it is the faithful Catholic devoted to Christ and the Church who is as Jesus told Thomas (John 20:29), Blessed are those who have not seen and have believed, and who go forth to proclaim “I have seen the Lord! He is Risen! Come and see!”

Nan Balfour is a grateful Catholic whose greatest desire is to make our Lord Jesus more loved. She seeks to accomplish this through her vocation to womanhood, marriage, and motherhood, as a writer, Missionary of Hope, Prayer Intercessor, Speaker Team member, and Volunteer for Pilgrim Center of Hope.

Answering Christ’s call, Pilgrim Center of Hope guides people to encounter Him so as to live in hope, as pilgrims in daily life. See what’s happening & let us journey with you! Visit