Isaiah 52:13-53:12; Hebrews 4:14-16; 5:7-9; John 18:1-19:42
Much has been said about what is ‘good’ about this day, I believe we each can personalize the ‘good’ for what it means to us. For me the ‘goodness’ of this day is to be able to reflect on Jesus’ compassion in his passion. We can begin with his agony in the garden “My soul is sorrowful even to death.” (Mt 26:38, Mk 14:34, Lk 22:44). Despite his sorrow and distress he is very patient with Peter James and John, whom he has asked to pray with him, but they cannot stay awake. Jesus also shows compassion for Judas. Jesus addresses him as “friend” even as he kisses him and turns him over to the authorities (Mt 26:50). Luke even records that Jesus heals the ear of a person that a disciple cuts off with a sword (Lk 22:51).
Evening Mass of the Lord's Supper
Exodus 12:1-8, 11-14
1 Corinthians 11:23-26
At the Last Supper and in every liturgy we hear the words that tell us Jesus took bread - blessed, broke and gave it to his disciples. In the same way we have been 'taken', that is, chosen to BE. From the billions of possible humans, God from all eternity affectionately chose me to BE.
We are all still wet clay,
being molded By the daily events of life.
Isaiah 50:4-9a; Matthew 26:14-25
We find it easy to place ourselves in Jesus’ presence in the holy three days about to start. But we also see how Jesus is fulfilling the Israelite prophecies.
The first reading is Isaiah’s Third Suffering Servant Song. The following psalm reminds us that God constantly forgives us even as we selfishly sin again and again. The scene in the upper room is where Jesus identifies Judas as the one who will betray him. Even at this tragic moment Jesus seeks a conversion. His response, “You say so!” has the meaning that “yes, since you asked”, leaving space for Judas to be reconciled.
Isaiah 49:1-6; John 13:21-33, 36-38
The early days of Holy Week are such a combination of anticipation and fearfulness of what is to come. We’ve had the weeks of Lent to prepare and we’re ready for Easter, yet we’re not. I’ve tried to live up to my Lenten resolutions – on some days with more enthusiasm than others. Today’s reading from Isaiah reminds me that God knows of my struggles: “Though I thought I had toiled in vain, and for nothing, uselessly, spent my strength. Yet my reward is with the Lord, my recompense with God.” The beautiful words and images in that reading help me feel protected and loved, help to reduce my own fearfulness at falling short.
Isaiah 42:1-7; John 12:1-11
What an interesting dinner party! We have Lazarus, who had recently died and was resurrected by Jesus. There is Martha, his sister, who had been given the opportunity to define what was really important by Jesus. Then comes Mary, another sister, who all along had particular devotion toward Jesus and insight into his ministry and purpose. Simon is there, who had been healed of leprosy by Jesus. The disciples were present, still not having a clue what was about to happen to Jesus. And among them was Judas, already in the midst of betraying Jesus, setting him up for arrest and crucifixion. Jesus must have looked around the room in amazement at the group that was surrounding him---so many pieces of an unbelievable puzzle that had not yet fully come together.
Johann Sebastian Bach | Matthäus - Passion / St Matthew Passion (BWV 244) performed live in concert by Tölzer Knabenchor & Hofkapelle München conducted by Christian Fliegner.
Soloists Tölzer Knabenchor
Benjamin Glaubitz, Evangelist
Julian Habermann, Tenor
Georg Gädker, Christus
Samuel Hasselhorn, Bass
Isaiah 50:4-7; Philippians 2:6-11; Matthew 26:14-27:66
CELEBRATION OF PALM SUNDAY OF THE PASSION OF THE LORD
HOMILY OF HIS HOLINESS POPE FRANCIS
St Peter's Basilica
35th World Youth Day
Sunday, 5 April 2020
Jesus “emptied himself, taking the form of a servant” (Phil 2:7). Let us allow these words of the Apostle Paul to lead us into these holy days, when the word of God, like a refrain, presents Jesus as servant: on Holy Thursday, he is portrayed as the servant who washes the feet of his disciples; on Good Friday, he is presented as the suffering and victorious servant (cf. Is 52:13); and tomorrow we will hear the prophecy of Isaiah about him: “Behold my servant, whom I uphold” (Is 42:1). God saved us by serving us. We often think we are the ones who serve God. No, he is the one who freely chose to serve us, for he loved us first. It is difficult to love and not be loved in return. And it is even more difficult to serve if we do not let ourselves be served by God.