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Friends, on this feast of St. John, our Gospel tells of his coming to faith in the Resurrection when he saw the empty tomb.

From this grave of Jesus, we learn that everything we took to be the case is not the case; that what always moved this way now moves that way.

God has shown us his power over death in the most unambiguous way; our lives should not be dominated by the fear of death, and we see the proof of this in the most vivid way imaginable.

Some people think that they will make the Resurrection more intelligible or more acceptable to modern people if they allegorize it away, turning it into a vague symbol of the perdurance of Jesus’ cause. But then his grave would be, like the grave of any ordinary hero, sad, wistful, reassuring.

Notice please that no cult of Jesus’ tomb ever developed in Christianity; we don’t look back with easy wistfulness. Rather, we allow ourselves to be surprised, turned upside down by it.