On Easter Sunday, April 4, 2010, about 160 members of the various Hebrew and Russian speaking communities in Israel celebrated Easter together in the Church of Our Lady Ark of the Covenant in Kiryat Yearim, coming together to be joyful and to give thanks to God for all his gifts.

The day began with a repetition of songs led by the team of musicians from the younger generation: Benedetto and Sinead from the Jaffa and Jerusalem communities and Myriam from Haifa as well as Paula and her flute and Lioba and her guitar and the team of heavenly voices.

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At 11.00 the mass began, celebrated by Father David, the Vicar, and 10 priests. The readings were read in Hebrew and Russian and during his homily, Father David stressed the following points:
-          Everything begins in the place of death – the tomb. Mary Magdalene goes there in order to give honor to the body of Jesus, who was laid there after hisd crucifixion. Ezekiel also arrives in a valley of dry, dead bones.
-          The great surprise is the place of death is emptied and left vacant because God does not let death have the last word. He surprises us always with his fidelity even we are unfaithful and choose death.
-          In order to accommodate the surprise, we must sharpen our ears so that we might be able to listen. Jesus calls Mary by name and only then her eyes are opened in order to discover him alive. He calls us – each one of us – by name, so that we might discover him too.
-          By listening to him, our body prepares itself to take the place left vacant by Jesus as a vacuum when he ascends into heaven. This task is much too big for us but he will give us his Spirit that will fill us and help us carry out our vocation.

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During the mass, there was the baptism of a new member of the community. The songs and the enthusiasm transformed the prayer into a true expression of great joy on this day.

After the prayer, the faithful organized themselves in groups in order to eat lunch, meet up with people from other communities and make new friends.

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At the end of the meal, the assembly divided into two groups: adults and children (two groups that were not defined by chronological age but rather by self definition – in the children group there were those aged 50 and at least one adult whose chronological age is 6). The children went in search of a treasure and the adults were challenged by a series of Biblical oriented tasks.

At the end of the day, we came together one last time to give thanks to God for all his blessings. Thank you that we have a community that knows how to be joyful in times of joy and pray in times of prayer.