CCC 478 Jesus knew and loved us each and all during his life, his agony and his Passion, and gave himself up for each one of us: “The Son of God. .. loved me and gave himself for me.”1 He has loved us all with a human heart. For this reason, the Sacred Heart of Jesus, pierced by our sins and for our salvation,2 “is quite rightly considered the chief sign and symbol of that. .. love with which the divine Redeemer continually loves the eternal Father and all human beings” without exception.3
CCC 608 After agreeing to baptize him along with the sinners, John the Baptist looked at Jesus and pointed him out as the “Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world”.4 By doing so, he reveals that Jesus is at the same time the suffering Servant who silently allows himself to be led to the slaughter and who bears the sin of the multitudes, and also the Paschal Lamb, the symbol of Israel’s redemption at the first Passover.5 Christ’s whole life expresses his mission: “to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many.”6
CCC 641 Mary Magdalene and the holy women who came to finish anointing the body of Jesus, which had been buried in haste because the Sabbath began on the evening of Good Friday, were the first to encounter the Risen One.7 Thus the women were the first messengers of Christ’s Resurrection for the apostles themselves.8 They were the next to whom Jesus appears: first Peter, then the Twelve. Peter had been called to strengthen the faith of his brothers,9 and so sees the Risen One before them; it is on the basis of his testimony that the community exclaims: “The Lord has risen indeed, and has appeared to Simon!”10
CCC 694 Water. The symbolism of water signifies the Holy Spirit’s action in Baptism, since after the invocation of the Holy Spirit it becomes the efficacious sacramental sign of new birth: just as the gestation of our first birth took place in water, so the water of Baptism truly signifies that our birth into the divine life is given to us in the Holy Spirit. As “by one Spirit we were all baptized,” so we are also “made to drink of one Spirit.”11 Thus the Spirit is also personally the living water welling up from Christ crucified12 as its source and welling up in us to eternal life.13
CCC 766 The Church is born primarily of Christ’s total self-giving for our salvation, anticipated in the institution of the Eucharist and fulfilled on the cross. “The origin and growth of the Church are symbolized by the blood and water which flowed from the open side of the crucified Jesus.”14 “For it was from the side of Christ as he slept the sleep of death upon the cross that there came forth the ‘wondrous sacrament of the whole Church.’”15 As Eve was formed from the sleeping Adam’s side, so the Church was born from the pierced heart of Christ hanging dead on the cross.16
CCC 1225 In his Passover Christ opened to all men the fountain of Baptism. He had already spoken of his Passion, which he was about to suffer in Jerusalem, as a “Baptism” with which he had to be baptized.17 The blood and water that flowed from the pierced side of the crucified Jesus are types of Baptism and the Eucharist, the sacraments of new life.18 From then on, it is possible “to be born of water and the Spirit”19 in order to enter the Kingdom of God.
See where you are baptized, see where Baptism comes from, if not from the cross of Christ, from his death. There is the whole mystery: he died for you. In him you are redeemed, in him you are saved.20
CCC 1432 The human heart is heavy and hardened. God must give man a new heart.21 Conversion is first of all a work of the grace of God who makes our hearts return to him: “Restore us to thyself, O LORD, that we may be restored!”22 God gives us the strength to begin anew. It is in discovering the greatness of God’s love that our heart is shaken by the horror and weight of sin and begins to fear offending God by sin and being separated from him. The human heart is converted by looking upon him whom our sins have pierced:23
Let us fix our eyes on Christ’s blood and understand how precious it is to his Father, for, poured out for our salvation it has brought to the whole world the grace of repentance.
1 Cal 2:20.
2 Cf. Jn 19:34.
3 Pius XII, Enc. Haurietis aquas (1956): DS 3924; cf. DS 3812.
4 Jn 1:29; cf. Lk 3:21; Mt 3:14-15; Jn 1:36.
5 Is 53:7,12; cf. Jer 11:19; Ex 12:3-14; Jn 19:36; 1 Cor 5:7.
6 Mk 10:45.
7 Mk 16:1; Lk 24:1; Jn 19:31,42.
8 Cf Lk 24:9-10; Mt 28:9-10; Jn 20:11-18.
9 Cf I Cor 15:5; Lk 22:31-32.
10 Lk 24:34, 36.
11 1 Cor 12:13.
12 Jn 19:34; 1 Jn 5:8.
13 Cf. Jn 4:10-14; 738; Ex 17:1-6; Isa 55:1; Zech 14:8; 1 Cor 10:4; Rev 21:6; 22:17.
14 LG 3; cf. Jn 19:34.
15 SC 5.
16 Cf. St. Ambrose, In Luc. 2,85-89:PL 15,1666-1668.
17 Mk 10:38; cf. Lk 12:50.
18 Cf. Jn 19:34; 1 Jn 5:6-8.
19 Cf. Jn 3:5.
20 St. Ambrose, De sacr. 2, 2, 6: PL 16, 444; cf. Jn 3:5.
21 Cf. Ezek 36:26-27.
22 Lam 5:21.
23 Cf. Jn 19:37; Zech 12:10.