I just got done reading The Day Christ Died by Jim Bishop.
My goal was to have it done by Easter but, alas, I just couldn't read quick enough.
I have posted before about how I sometimes wish Gospel writers were historians so we had more detail about the life of Jesus. Well, in this book, Bishop combines a ton of historical research and Church teaching to paint every detail of Jesus' last day on Earth. It is very well written - so much so that there were times I had to remind myself that I wasn't reading a live account of what happened!
Needless to say, I highly recommend it.
But there was one paragraph at the end of the book that really moved me. Bishop tells the familiar story of how Joseph of Arimathea went to Pilate and asked if he could take Jesus' body to a tomb.
To me, that has always been a sidebar in the Passion. I never really took the time to reflect on what a brave thing Joseph really did. Bishop explains that while Joseph was an important member of the Sanhedrin, he was a secret follower of Jesus. By asking Pilate for Jesus' body, he "outed himself" and put himself in great danger.
That brave act becomes even more meaningful when you realize that it was Joseph - and not one of the 11 Apostles - that took the lead to care for our Savior's body. What love! What faith! What a great example for all of us.