Meditations on the Resurrection

Richard Salbato

Before Each Hail Mary

Moments after Christ’s death on the cross, His soul descended into the great fissure in the ground caused by the earthquake. Countless Angels followed Him. Darkness overcame the land and people began to run away in terror. Strong winds came up, and lightening struck through the red fog. The Roman soldiers decided to leave, but first they had to make sure Christ and the thieves were dead.

In order to hurry up their deaths, the soldiers broke the legs of the thieves. This would keep them from holding up their bodies; their ribs would crush their lungs, and they would suffocate.

They came to do the same to Jesus. Cassius, the captain of the guard stopped them: “He is already dead.” He lowered his lance and drove it through the right side of Our Lord, into His Heart. When he pulled out the lance, the last drops of blood and water came forward. The new covenant of His blood had begun. Cassius is now known by his Christian name, Longinus.

2. With Pilate's permission, Joseph of Arimathea and Nicodemus took the body of Jesus down from the cross, and placed it into the arms of His Mother. Our Lady, Our Queen, and Our Mother, took the limp body of Her Son and held him to her. She pressed Her face against His bloodied cheek. After some time, she loosened Her hold on Him and kissed Him. Looking out at the world, She offered a prayer for the salvation of all mankind. Mary washed the wounds on His face and pulled out one thorn that had broken off in His forehead. The holy women wrapped the body in linen-clothes with herbs and spices. When He was wrapped in a burial shroud, they took Him to a cave-sepulcher that Joseph of Arimathea had originally bought for himself. They laid Jesus on a stone shelf, and rolled a large stone in front of the door. Two Roman guards stood by and guarded the door to the sepulcher.

3. The Divinity of Jesus united to His human soul, descended to the underworld, a kind of limbo, where the souls of the just awaited their redemption. Passing first through the multitudes of faithful from John the Baptist to Adam and Eve, Jesus quickly went all the way to the gates of Hell. His Angels broke open the gates of Hell. The dammed were forced to their knees by the Good Angels with Christ. At a signal from Jesus, chains were placed on Lucifer and some of his demons. The gates of Hell were then closed again. These chains do not stop Lucifer entirely, but they do put great restrictions on him. He can no longer abuse the innocent, but only those willing to get inside the limits of the chains. During the end of days, these chains will be removed for a short time.

4. Jesus then went back to the realm of the just who were awaiting their redemption. He met first with Adam and Eve, and then Moses and Abraham. He spoke to the entire multitude of His New and Everlasting Kingdom and of the Sanctifying Grace given to mankind by His Eternal Sacrifice on the Cross. On the two sides of Jesus were his close relatives, Anne, Joachim, Joseph, Zachary, Elizabeth and John the Baptist. Here Jesus Himself baptized all of the just into His Kingdom, the Church, and promised to come back the next day to take them to the everlasting Heaven. He left and entered into another realm, called Paradise, where the two Patriarchs, Enoch and Elias, waited for Him. The good thief went with him to Paradise. After instructions on their future mission back to earth, Christ returned to earth, and entered back into His Body.

5. The faithful Patriarchs of the Old Law followed Jesus back to the earth and to the sepulture were His body lay. A great earthquake hit the garden and the great stone rolled away from the door. Jesus went back into the tomb and entered His body. Now both His body and soul rose up into a standing position and floated above the ground. Suddenly a great bolt of lightening shot out from the inside of His Body leaving His image on the Shroud. The Angels with him removed the wrappings and folded them up and placed them on the stone shelf. They did the same with the face cloth and the Shroud.

6. Meanwhile, Mary had left the holy women and begun to trace the path that Her Son had just taken. Mary Herself made the first Stations of the Cross. She thought about His sufferings as She climbed up to Calvary. At the place of His Crucifixion, Jesus appeared to Her in His resurrected Body. “Mary, My Mother!” He said. “My Son!” She cried, wrapping Her arms around Him in joyful tears. The Patriarchs with Him bowed down low before the Blessed Mother. After a short conversation with Her, He disappeared.

7. The holy women went to the tomb to pray but when they reached the gates of the garden they could see that the great stone was cast aside and the door to the tomb open. Looking inside they saw that the tomb was empty. They ran away in fear to tell the Apostles. They believed that the Pharisees had stolen the body. Magdalene stayed behind in tears and prayed before the open tomb. Jesus appeared behind her in a normal body. “Woman, why do you weep?” Without looking up, she answered: “They have taken my Lord, and I do not know where they have taken him.”

“Who do you seek?” Again without looking up, she said: “Sir, if you have taken him, show me where you have lain him and I will take him away.”

“Mary!” Jesus said. Swinging around now because she recognized his voice, she said: “Rabboni!” She fell to the ground and tried to hug His feet.

“Do not touch me, for I have not yet ascended to My Father. Go and tell the Apostles that I live and to wait for Me in the upper room of the Cenacle.”

8. Jesus disappeared. Taking the entire multitude of faithful from Adam and Eve to John, the Baptist and followed by the entire angelic host, Jesus rose to the Gates of Heaven. Lifting His wounded right hand He opened the gates of Heaven for the first time. The entire multitude followed Him to the center of Heaven, and to the foot of the throne of God.

9. Upon hearing that Jesus had risen from the dead, the Apostles did not believe Mary Magdalene, however, Peter and John ran to the tomb to see for themselves. John, being much younger, reached the tomb first, but out of respect for Peter’s authority, waited outside and did not enter until Peter arrived and went in. Peter saw the linen clothes and the shroud folded to one side. They went back to report to the other Apostles what they had seen. The Apostles were still frightened and locked the doors behind them.

10. Jesus came and passed right through the bolted door. “Peace be to you.” He walked through them showing His wounded hands and added: “As the Father has sent Me, I, also, send you. Jesus then breathed on them. The only time that God had ever breathed on a human being was when God
breathed life into Adam. Receive the Holy Spirit, He said. Whose sins you shall forgive, they are forgiven. Whose sins you shall retain, they are retained.” God showed them how to give life back to a soul that was dead in sin.

Thomas was not there when Jesus appeared and did not believe. When Christ appeared again He took Thomas’ finger and put it into the wound of His hand, and said: “Be not faithless, but believe. Blessed are they that have not seen, but believe.”

Thomas knelt down and said: “My Lord and my God.”