April 12, 2017

Spy Wed

April 12, 2017:  Wednesday of Holy Week / "Spy Wednesday"

  • 'Money' tie, silver-colored tie pin:  The chief priests paid Judas 30 silver pieces (gospel)

  • 'Broken hearts' suspenders:  "Insult has broken my heart" (psalm)

  • 'Hand' tie pin:  Judas dipped his hand into the dish and will  'hand' Jesus over (gospel)

  • 'Silverware' tie bar:  Last Supper (gospel)

  • Purple shirt:  Lenten season


  • He was despisèd, from Messiah/ Handel, for "He gave his back" middle section (1st reading)
For the psalm
(Sorry; nothing from the metal band Judas Iscariot :-)
Pope Francis
General audience:  Unlike worldly hopes, which don't bring lasting satisfaction, our hope is grounded in God’s eternal love.  As Jesus entered Jerusalem, he said, “unless a grain of wheat falls to the ground and dies, it remains just a grain of wheat; but if it dies, it produces much fruit.”  If a seed remains closed, nothing happens; if it breaks open, it gives life to a plant that will yield fruit. 
Jesus brought new hope into the world; his death and resurrection show that God's self-giving love can transform darkness into light, sin into forgiveness, apparent defeat into victory.  Hope is born from the Cross; look at the Crucified Christ to find undying hope. 
Those who live and love with humility and choose the hope Jesus gave us make the winning choice.  Those who thirst for worldly things and strive only to satisfy their own desires will never be satisfied.  It’s a nasty thirst:  the more you have, the more you want, and in the end you lose everything. 
The Cross is the source of the hope that gives our lives meaning and direction.  The Cross isn't the goal; it’s a step towards the glory we're called to.  As we celebrate these holy days of love that lead to Easter, contemplate the Cross and say to the Lord, “with You nothing is lost; You are my hope,” and imitate his undying love.  More  
  • Is 50:4-9a  I gave my back to those who beat me; I didn't shield my face from buffets and spitting.  God my help upholds me; I won't be put to shame.
  • Ps 69:8-10, 21-22, 31, 33-34  "Lord, in your great love, answer me."  I bear insult.  I've become an outcast because zeal for you consumes me.  Insult has broken my heart, I'm weak, and nobody consoled me.  I'll sing praise to God who hears the poor.
  • Mt 26:14-25  Judas Iscariot looked for an opportunity to hand Jesus over.  The disciples asked Jesus where to prepare the Passover supper, then did as he ordered.  Jesus / disciples:  “One of you will betray me.” / “Not I!?” / “The one who dipped his hand into the dish with me....  Woe to him.”  Judas:  “Not I!?"...
    Bonus:  Easter Triduum infographics (click for full-size)

    Teixeira for the Focus blog

    Thanks to Catholic-Link


    • Creighton:  The "suffering servant" of the 1st reading is dedicated to God at any cost, steadfast in faith, reliant on God.   As I read this week's readings, I ask, Am I a betrayer like Judas, or one who reacts out of expediency like Peter, or one who keeps my distance but did right like Joseph of Arimathea, or loyal to the end like John and the women at the foot of the cross?...
    • One Bread, One Body:  "The Triduum":  Today is the last Mass of Lent; the Easter Triduum begins with the Mass of the Lord's Supper and closes with Easter Sunday evening prayer.  Jesus tells us, "I am to celebrate the Passover with my disciples in your house."  In the Triduum we enter into the mystery of Trinitarian love and the plan of our redemption. We enter into "a mysterious, a hidden wisdom."  Are you prepared for what he's prepared for you, repentant?  Have you forgiven everyone and confessed your own sins?  Are you living for love of God?
      The Last Supper/ Da Vinci
    • Passionist:  Jesus is accomplishing God's will, “that they all be one,…” is excluding no one.  He handles opposition, violence, and betrayal non-violently.  Many of his followers also take his road of nonviolence.  The drama of love for what's best about humankind is played out in each of our lives.  Tomorrow evening we can place ourselves on the altar in union with the sacrificial act that brings unity in diversity.  May we be attentive to Jesus' words and actions and follow him along the road....
    • DailyScripture.net:  "The tragedy of the betrayal":  Was Judas' treachery motivated by greed, disappointment with Jesus, or disillusionment?  Maybe he didn't intend his Master to die; maybe he thought Jesus was setting up his kingdom too slowly and wanted to force his hand.  Whatever, he refused to accept Jesus as he was.  "Consider what Judas said to the priests:  What will you give me if I hand him over?  He took money in exchange for God's Word.  They do the same thing who accept goods in exchange for casting the Savior and Word out from their souls.  It's fitting to apply Judas' example to all who show contempt for God's Word and betray him by committing sin.  People who behave like this appear to be calling out to the enemy who offers worldly gain in return for betraying God's Word, saying, What will you give me if I hand him over?  The number of coins they gave Judas was the number of years the Savior sojourned in this world; at 30 he was baptized and began to preach, like Joseph was 30 when he began to gather grain for his brothers.  As God prepared the grain for the Israelites then but also gave it to the Egyptians, so too the gospel was prepared for the saints but preached also to the unfaithful" (Origen, Commentary on Matthew 78, paraphrased).  Jesus knew what would befall him; at the last supper, he put his apostles under suspicion ("one of you will betray me") to teach them to examine themselves lest they think themselves stronger than they were.  We too must examine ourselves and ask God to strengthen us in faith, hope, and love that we may not fail or forsake him when tempted.  "Do not lead us into temptation, but deliver us from evil."  Father, we are frail and indisposed to every virtuous and gallant undertaking. Strengthen our weakness, we beseech you, that we may do valiantly in this spiritual war; help us against our own negligence and cowardice, and defend us from the treachery of our unfaithful hearts; for Jesus Christ's sake  (Thomas a Kempis).

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