April 18, 2014

Good Fri.

April 18, 2014:  Good Friday

Readings

  • Is 52:13-53:12  My servant shall be exalted.  There was no appearance to attract us to him, so marred was his look.  He was spurned and avoided, a man of suffering, but he bore our infirmities and sufferings.  By his stripes we were healed.  We had gone astray, but the Lord laid our guilt upon him.  He submitted like a lamb led to slaughter.  He was taken away, cut off from the land of the living, buried with evildoers though he had done no wrong.  God's will shall be accomplished through him.  He shall take away the sins of many and win pardon for their offenses.
    Tagxedo word cloud 4-18-14
  • Ps 31:2, 6, 12-13, 15-16, 17, 25   "Father, into your hands I commend my spirit."  I'm a laughingstock, forgotten, broken; people flee from me.  But I trust you, Lord; rescue me from my enemies.  You will redeem me.
  • Heb 4:14-16; 5:7-9  Our great high priest, Jesus, Son of God, can sympathize with our weaknesses; he was tested in every way.  Approach the throne; receive mercy, grace, and help.  Jesus offered prayers to the one who could save him and was heard.  He learned obedience from suffering, then became the source of salvation.
Jesus went with his disciples to a garden; Judas went there with soldiers.  They seized Jesus and brought him to Annas.  Peter followed and was brought in.  The gatekeeper said,  “Are you one of his disciples?”; he denied it.  Annas questioned Jesus, then sent him to Caiaphas.  Slaves and guards around a fire asked Peter, “Are you one of his disciples?” and he said no.  One challenged him, and he denied it again; then a cock crowed.
They brought Jesus to the praetorium.  Pilate:  “What's the charge?” / “He's a criminal.” / “Judge him yourselves.” / “We can't execute anyone.”  Pilate / Jesus:  “Are you the King of the Jews?”... / “My kingdom doesn't belong to this world.”...  Pilate / Jews:  “I find no guilt.  Do you want me to release him to you?” / “No; Barabbas!”  Jesus was scourged, given a crown of thorns and purple cloak, mocked, and stricken.  “Look; I find no guilt in him....  Behold!” / “Crucify him!” / “I find no guilt.” / “He ought to die because he made himself the Son of God.”  Pilate, afraid to Jesus:  “I can release or crucify you.” / “You'd have no power if God hadn't given it to you...”  He tried to release him; but the Jews cried out, “If you do, you're no Friend of Caesar.” / “Crucify him!  We have no king but Caesar.”
They had Jesus carry the cross to Golgotha, where they crucified him between two others, with inscription “Jesus..., King of the Jews.”  Soldiers cast lots for his tunic and divided his other clothes.  His mother, aunt Mary, and Mary of Magdala were there.  Jesus told Mary and beloved disciple:  “Behold, your son.  Behold, your mother.”  He said, “I thirst,” sipped from the sponge of wine, said “It is finished,” bowed his head, and handed over his spirit.
The Jews asked Pilate that his legs be broken and he be taken down, but they saw he was already dead.  A soldier thrust a lance into him, and blood and water flowed out.
Pilate allowed Joseph of Arimathea, secret disciple, to remove Jesus' body; he took it.  They bound it with cloths and spices Nicodemus brought, then laid him in a new tomb in the garden.
Pope Francis
  • Way of the Cross (Via Crucis):  God placed the weight of our sinsmdash;injustice, bitterness, tyranny, arrogancemdash;on the Cross of Jesus, heavy because it carried the ugliness of evil.  Many, like Jesus, are nailed to a bed of pain, at hospitals, nursing homes, in families, lonely, despairing.  We're capable of monstrosities when we let evil guide us, but the Cross is glorious because it represents God's love, greater than our iniquity.  Before the Cross we can almost touch how much we're loved; we feel like children, not objects.  Jesus can lead us from the Cross to the Resurrection and teach us that mercy and forgiveness, not evil, has the last word.  Pray that the sick and abandoned find in the Cross the strength of Hope of the Resurrection and Love of God. More coverage
  • Homily by papal preacher Fr. Cantalamessa:  Judas Iscariot was chosen to be an apostle; he wasn't born a traitor but became one.  He handed Jesus over for money, the deceitful "visible god"/anti-God that inverts values and is behind society's evils.  The betrayal of Judas continues, and the one betrayed is still Jesus.  Judas sold the head; we sell the body:  “As you did it to one of the least, you did it to me” (Mt 25:40).  “Let me think about the Judas within me; he may also be in you.”  Betrayal of spouse, vow, or conscience is betrayal of Christ.  Bach’s St. Matthew Passion includes a chorale that begins “It is I; I am the traitor!  I need to make amends.” 
Jesus never abandoned Judas, and no one knows whether Judas ended in Satan's hands or God's; we declare Saints in heaven but never know who's in hell.  What happened in his soul at the end?  Jesus' response is more important than Judas' betrayal; he waited, called him "friend", and prayed, “Father, forgive them...”  Will we follow Peter who had confidence in Christ's mercy, or Judas who doubted it?  Surrender to the Crucified One who freely forgives.
    Reflections
        Jesus the Homeless, crucified/ Schmalz
        (Thanks, Dr. Keens)
      • Creighton:  Jesus is stripped of dignity and purpose, abandoned, and mocked, before doing what he came for.  But he stays faithful through the abuse, shame, and denial.  Christ offers us his life, wisdom to continue our journeys, and communion with us; let's serve him.
      • One Bread One Body:  Are we any better than the soldiers who mocked and slapped Jesus?  Are we afraid like Pilate?  God wants us all to be saved and know the truth.
          • Passionist:  Jesus died as he lived, with faith, respect for others, and kindness.  Meditate on "From that hour the disciple took [Mary] into his home"; make a home for someone grieving or otherwise suffering:  stand with them by calling, being present, listening, loving...
          • DailyScripture.net:  "We too gaze on his wounds and see his blood, touch his scars.  His heart is open in love to you, his arms extended to embrace you, his body displayed for your redemption.  As every part of his body was fixed to the cross, so he may now be fixed in every part of your soul." (St. Augustine)
          "Many are the wondrous happenings of that time, but none compares with the miracle of my salvation.  A few drops of blood renew the world and bind us together."  (St. Gregory Nazianzen)
          "The cross of Christ is heaven's door, the devil's downfall, our uplifting, consolation, and prize our freedom." (Rupert of Deutz)
          • Moved to greater love for Jesus in his Passion:  Compel us to discard our pettiness and venture into the oceans of charity towards others. (The Divine Milieu/ Teilhard)  +Christ Comes through the Ruins/ Merton 
          Music
          Apparel


          • "Pierced hearts" suspenders:  he was pierced for our offenses (1st reading); Jesus' love to the end
          • Red striped shirt:  "by his stripes we were healed" (1st reading); color of day
          • "Sheep" tie bar:  "We had all gone astray like sheep" (1st reading)
          • "Kneeling person" tie bar:  "Jesus offered prayers with cries and tears" (2nd reading)
          • "Rooster" pin:  the cock crowed after Peter's denials (gospel)
          • "Stone" tie pin:  "Pilate seated Jesus at the place called Stone Pavement, Gabbatha." 
          • Tie with crowns:  "Jesus the Nazorean, King of the Jews" (inscription from gospel)
          • "Playing card" tie bar:  They cast lots for his clothes (gospel)
          • "Question mark" tie pin:  questions to Peter, Jews, and Jesus from soldiers, gatekeeper, slaves/guards, Annas, Caiaphas, and Pilate (gospel)
          • Brown blazer and sandals (not shown; trust me):  wood of the cross
          • Crucifix

          Dress your life!