ROME – On Christianity’s holiest day, Pope Francis said that the resurrection of Christ was a massive surprise, even to his closest followers, and drew the conclusion that “Our God is a God of surprises.”

“At the beginning of the story of salvation, it was full of surprises, with God telling Abraham ‘leave your land and go’,” the pope said. “It’s one surprise after the other. God does not know how to announce something to us without surprising us.”

“The surprise is what stirs the heart, that touches you precisely there, where you’re not expecting it,” he said. “To say it with the language of young people, the surprise is a ‘low blow,’ because you’re not expecting it. He goes and stirs you.”

Francis himself followed the “surprise” model in his Easter Sunday homily, speaking entirely extemporaneously and without any notes.

At the heart of the Easter story, the pope said, is the announcement that “Christ is Risen!” He noted that early Christians actually used that phrase as a way of saying hello to one another.

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Pope says Easter’s ultimate proof that ‘our God is a God of surprises’

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