The appearance of Jesus..our Easter lily, promises a rebirth of all of Nature.

Sunday, 3/27/16

For Easter I like retelling one of my old Korea stories. Fifty-two years ago, during the spring of 1964, I was serving my tenth year as pastor of Yang Yang, a town of mud walls and thatched roofs.

We‘d had the worst winter ever, and with people running out of both fire wood and rice, the winter hung on forever. It was good for the dealers of these sparse commodities who took to boosting prices out of sight.

Our church sat atop a steep hill overlooking the public school yard. Coming out from our 6:30 Mass every morning, I had made a habit of watching the struggles of a nine-year-old student with his book bag strapped to his back. 

While all the other kids plodded the path around te bottom of our hill to their school, that little boy felt the need to climb up one side of our hill, then carefully step down the path on the far side.

One morning, I was watching the kid making his quick passage across our yard to the down path, when I was surprised to see him stop and hunker for a bit at the edge of our hill. He then went on his way, and I came in for breakfast.

Then, at ten o’clock I happened to glance out at the mailman making his passage across our yard. But I was surprised to see him stop and bend down at the spot where the little boy had stopped. He was a friendly fellow, so I walked out to his side to ask what had caught his attention.

Now, the year before we had put in a flower bed running around the rim of our hill top. By late March there was nothing but rock-hard frozen ground there. But, taking a stand next to the mailman, I looked down on a single green sprout. It was like a spike of asparagus, and the mailman said, “Paikhwa gotchida.” Or, “It’s a paik-hwa flower.”

Going into the house, and looking paik-hwa  up in the dictionary, I found that it was a lily.

Then, through the day I saw one person after another stopping to look at our Easter lily. We are not so much joyous over that single lily, as over the promise he gives that all of nature will come back to life.

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