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(taken from Fr. Larry Richards’ homily, April 16, 2017)

As we embark on the 50 days of Easter, write something down, every day, that helps you experience being loved. How do you experience God loving you today? The first day, Easter, is easy…He rose from the dead. It could also be as simple as I walked today; I talked today; I listened today; I ate today; God embraced me in my prayer today; God whispered to my heart that he loves me. For 50 days focus on the life that God gives us AND the love that He gives us ~ let’s start living like we are loved and not in a way that embraces the resistance and doubt in us… “I’m not good enough; life is so bad…” Let’s live the next 50 days like we are loved and, every day, focus on something different that makes us feel loved.

Don’t end there ~ ask the Lord to help you help others in little ways. After you write down how God showed you that He loves you write down how you showed others that you love them. The deepest need in everyone’s heart is love. When you experience love, the more life you receive. When you love others more, the more life you give! The more you love others, the more life and love comes upon you.

This Easter Christ has given us life, eternal life; a life where we know forever that we are loved. Let’s experience that for the next 50 days and let’s share that with others. Live every day; live like you are loved every day!

EDITORIAL NOTE: Last Easter Fr. Larry invited everyone to focus on JOY for the 50 days of Easter. I began that journey last Easter and it has been life changing for me. While I completed the first 50 days I find myself starting the journey again and again. Things that seem ordinary become gifts from God and fill my life with more JOY than I could have ever imagined. Moments in my day have been transformed and make me very aware of God’s presence in my life. My JOY journey has shaped how I look at life and the events in my life each and every day. I am excited to begin this journey of LOVE.