PM says Easter is a time to be grateful

AUSTRALIA'S largest churches have used their Easter messages to remind believers of the struggles faced by those close to us, and even those on the other side of the globe.

Prime Minister Tony Abbott will this morning tell Australians that Easter is simply a time to be grateful.

Catholic Bishop Most Reverend Anthony Fisher said the world still craves "for a God who cares" even as we search for lost Malaysia Airlines flight MH370, watch the unfolding conflicts in Ukraine and Syria.

"Whether it's the personal crises or the global ones, we all crave for a God who cares, who will somehow carry us through, who will bring peace," he said.

Uniting Church's Reverend Professor Andrew Dutney said the resurrection of Jesus Christ in the Bible tells us not to lose heart in the face of cruelty.

We must persevere in our struggles, including the struggle to help "Australia's First Peoples".

Rev Prof Dutney also said on asylum seekers: "We hope for the day when Australia welcomes strangers in need, rather than punishing them as an example to others who might seek help."

Mr Abbott said he hoped Australians were enjoying their break, describing it as a time to "give thanks and rejoice for the good things in life that we share".

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