April 4, 2020

Holy Week - 2020

Palm Sunday - A

Pope Francis' Message for Holy Week 2020

March 28, 2020

5th Sunday of Lent - A (March 29, 2020)

“Untie him and let him go”

Jesus loved Martha and her sister and Lazarus.

Lazarus was ill.
His sisters sent word to Jesus saying, “Master, the one you love is ill.”

When Jesus saw Mary and the people weeping, “he became perturbed and deeply troubled.”

“And Jesus wept.”

So the Jews said, “See how he loved him.”

With the current health crisis that our world is facing, let us spend some time meditating on these words.  Let us live the love that Jesus has for us, which is revealed in a unique way when we suffer.

“If you believe, you will see the glory of God.”

We know the rest of the story. 

But not just the story of Lazarus.

More importantly, we know the story of Jesus, who is the Resurrection and life.  

March 21, 2020

4th Sunday of Lent - A (March 22, 2020)

Jesus Sought Us Out

“As Jesus passed by he saw a man blind from birth.”
The man did not ask Jesus to heal him.  Nor did anybody else do so on the man’s behalf.

Jesus reached out to the man in need and healed him. 

At the end of the Gospel passage, “when Jesus heard that they had thrown him out, he found him.”  The verb here could mean that Jesus came across the man (by chance).  It could also be translated as Jesus sought him out. 

That Jesus took the initiative to heal the man, and what Jesus would say next indicate that Jesus sought him out.  “I came so that those who do not see might see.”

In these days of anxiety and much suffering, may we be more aware and believe that Jesus knows our sufferings and our needs.  May we believe that he always reaches out and heals us.   

Image:  El Greco, Healing of the Man Born Blind, wikipedia.org

March 14, 2020

3rd Sunday of Lent - A (March 15, 2020)

Savior of the World

Today, Jesus tells us that he is and he gives us water of life.  His words of truth free us and bring us into the family of God, as they did for the woman and the people of that Samaritan town.

The next two Sundays, He will reveal that He is “the light of the world,” “the resurrection and the life.”

He “is truly the savior of the world.”

The Samaritans in today’s Gospel believes in him.

May we have the same faith.     

Image:  S├ębastien Bourdon - Christ and the Samaritan Woman, commons.wikimedia.org

March 7, 2020

2nd Sunday of Lent - A (March 8, 2020)

The Vision

Lent in some ways offers us a chance to visit the spiritual eye doctor to check or refocus our vision.

The vision is Jesus Christ, the “beloved Son, with whom God is well pleased.”  He is the model for us to live as God’s sons and daughters. 

We see this vision when we pray and we reflect on his life.  This life was given to others to the point of the cross.

We also learn about this vision when we listen to him, as God instructs us. 

Living this vision is living a holy life (2nd reading) that brings blessing to “all the communities of the earth” (1st reading).
Image source:  www.agnusday.org

February 29, 2020

1st Sunday of Lent - A (March 1, 2020)

Three Temptations, Three Lenten Practices

The three temptations that Jesus faced have one thing in common – to be in control.
First, to be in control of taking care of ourselves and our wants and needs.
Second, to be in control of God – we want God to do what we want, to provide for what we need (even in the way and at the time we want it).
Third, to be in control of others.

Which of these three is God inviting me to work on this Lent?  Probably a little of all three.

And the three Lenten practices (disciplines) the Church teaches us can be helpful accordingly.
Fasting helps us to learn through hunger, thirst, and want that we are not in control of our own destiny, and that we depend on God and others.
Prayer helps us to let God be in control.
Almsgiving helps us to focus not on ourselves but others, not on our wants but the needs of others.   
Image source:  www.agnusday.org

February 22, 2020

7th Sunday - A (February 23, 2020)

Your Heavenly Father is Perfect

Jesus continues to show us how we can be the salt of the earth and the light of the world.
Last week, we could summarize the practices he taught as, “It is not enough to avoid evil, we must do good.”

Similarly, today’s Gospel can be summarized as, “Not only should we not take revenge, we must love those who wrong us.”

That is the way of God, which Jesus is inviting us to follow.  That is the way to become more like the heavenly Father who is perfect. 

Lent begins this Wednesday, this invitation from Jesus should be the motivation and purpose of our Lenten practices.  
Image source:  www.agnusday.org