'And when they came to the place called the Skull, they crucified him there, and the robbers, one on his right hand and the other on his left. And Jesus said, " Father forgive them, for they know not what they do." Now in dividing his garments they cast lots.
And the people stood looking on; and the rulers with them kept sneering at him, saying, "He saved others , let him save himself, if he is the Christ, the chosen one of God." And the soldiers also mocked him, coming to him and offering him common wine, and saying, "If thou art the King of the Jews, save thyself!"
And there was also an inscription written over him in Greek and Latin and Hebrew letters, "This is the King of the Jews."
Now one of those robbers who were hanged, was abusing him, saying, "If thou art the Christ, save thyself and us!" But the other in answer rebuked him, and said, " Dost not even thou fear God, seeing that thou art under the same sentence? And we indeed justly, for we are receiving what our deeds deserved; but this man has done nothing wrong." And he said to Jesus, "Lord, remember me when thou comest into thy kingdom." And Jesus said to him, "Amen I say to thee, this day thou shalt be with me in paradise." (St Luke Ch.23/v.33-43)
I strongly recommend an article on St Dismas (the good thief), posted by Fr Gordon Macrae on his blogsite 'These Stone Walls' several years ago. The link is immediately below:-
This beautiful, haunting poem, is one of my favourite Easter poems, and I hope that you will allow me to share it with you.
'Limbo' by Sister Mary Ada.
The ancient greyness shifted
Suddenly and thinned,
Like mist upon the moors
Before a wind.
An old, old prophet lifted
A shining face and said :
“He will be coming soon.
The Son of God is dead;
He died this afternoon.”
A murmurous excitement stirred
They wondered if they dreamed ---
Save one old man who seemed
Not even to have heard.
And Moses standing,
Hushed them all to ask
If any had a welcome song prepared.
If not, would David take the task?
And if they cared
Could not the three young children sing
The Benedicite, the canticle of praise
They made when God kept them from perishing
In the fiery blaze?
A breath of spring surprised them,
Stilling Moses’ words.
No one could speak, remembering
The first fresh flowers,
The little singing birds.
Still others thought of fields new ploughed
Or apple trees
All blossom - boughed.
Or some, the way a dried bed fills
Laughing down green hills.
The fisherfolk dreamed of the foam
On bright blue seas.
The one old man who had not stirred
And there He was
Splendid as the morning sun and fair
As only God is fair.
And they, confused with joy,
Knelt to adore
Seeing that he wore
Five crimson stars
He never had before.
No canticle at all was sung.
None toned a psalm, or raised a greeting song.
A silent man alone
Of all that throng
Found tongue ----
Not any other.
Close to His heart
When the embrace was done,
Old Joseph said,
“How is Your Mother,
How is Your Mother, Son?”
(‘The Mary Book’ an anthology by F.J.Sheed. Published by Sheed and Ward 1950.)
'Resurrection of Christ' - Noel Coypel 1700
'Christus vincit, Christus regnat, Christus imperat'